The Guardian has rather a nice set of graphics about food supplies and the connection between the EU and us here in the UK. They’re also pumping up the Project Fear nonsense:[perfectpullquote align=”full” bordertop=”false” cite=”” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]With Boris Johnson claiming he will take Britain out of the EU by 31 October “do or die”, the UK’s reliance on EU food is a major risk. In the event of a no-deal Brexit, the UK would be obliged under World Trade Organization rules to impose average food import tariffs of 22% and conduct product inspections, leading to delays and shortening the shelf-life of products.[/perfectpullquote]
Codswallop. Pure unadulterated nonsense.
Firstly, WTO rules don’t say you must impose tariffs. Rather, if you do, you’ve got to impose them equally upon all without fear or favour. So, no, we’re not obliged to impose tariffs.
Secondly, the WTO doesn’t state a level of tariffs. Rather, it states a maximum you may charge, you are entirely at liberty to charge anything you like – including zero, I phoned Geneva and asked them – less than those maximums.
Thirdly, the 22% isn’t even the WTO maximum. That’s the average the EU charges and once we’ve left the EU there’s absolutely no reason whatsoever we have to do what they say, is there?
So, a significant fail by The Guardian there. Nice graphics, it’s just the information is more than a bit shit.