Realist, not conformist analysis of the latest financial, business and political news

British Retail Consortium Is Lying About Brexit And Tariffs. Again

The informed speculation these days is to wonder at what it is that Remain and the European Union have as blackmail material on the British Retail Consortium. Has someone found them ogling the mannequins in the back room? Or spotted them getting into bed with a retail apocalypse? Just what hold do they have to make them lie so? Because they have been lying about the effects of Brexit all along:

[perfectpullquote align=”full” bordertop=”false” cite=”” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””] A no-deal Brexit could lead to tariffs of 40% or more being imposed on food such as beef and cheddar cheese, driving up prices in shops and squeezing household budgets across the UK and Ireland, retail organisations from both countries have warned. With mounting fears that the UK could leave the European Union without an agreement in 36 days’ time, the British Retail Consortium (BRC), Northern Ireland Retail Consortium (NIRC) and Retail Ireland, issued a joint warning that this outcome could lead to delays at borders and shortages of fresh meat, fish, fruit and vegetables. [/perfectpullquote]

This is simply flat out lying about tariffs. As I first pointed out 2 1/2 years ago, when the lie first started to be bandied about:

[perfectpullquote align=”full” bordertop=”false” cite=”” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””] To insist, meanwhile, that we must raise tariffs on the imports we desire is to misunderstand the WTO system. As a source in Geneva explains, Britain is a WTO member in its own right and will still be so even after Brexit happens. This means that we have promised not to charge higher than the allowable ceilings in tariffs upon imports from other WTO members. The Most Favoured Nation clause also states that whatever we do decide to charge ourselves, we must apply the same rate to the same products from all different WTO countries. But not charging higher than the allowable ceilings does not commit us to charging anything at all. We can apply a 0 per cent rate (yes, I checked) if we so wish. That is, being outside the EU means we do not have to charge the EU external tariff rates upon anything and can insist that we pay ourselves nothing on all sources of food from everywhere. Economists are reasonably certain this is going to lead to lower food prices in Britain. [/perfectpullquote]

So, yes, they’re lying. Which leaves us with just the interesting question. What is it that they’ve done which leaves them open to the blackmail forcing them to do this?

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literate3
literate3
5 years ago

Is Somerset planning to impose 40% tariffs on its exports of cheese to the rest of the UK? Do they even know where Cheddar comes from?

Jonathan Harston
Jonathan Harston
5 years ago
Reply to  literate3

They wouldn’t be able to, Somerset would only be able to impose tariffs on chess *IT* buys from the rest of the UK. Tarrifs are things the ******BUYER************ pays, not the seller.

Dodgy Geezer
Dodgy Geezer
5 years ago

“…..So, yes, they’re lying. Which leaves us with just the interesting question. What is it that they’ve done which leaves them open to the blackmail forcing them to do this?….” You do not need to be forced to lie if it is in your interest to do so. I assume that the British Retail Consortium is an EU-supporting body which does a lot of its work with the EU bureaucracy and probably owes its existence to government/EU funding. Its primary purpose is to promulgate Food Technical Standards and Protocols for food suppliers – exactly what the EU does. I guess… Read more »

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