Adam Smith Inst - Stuck in the middle with EU - Why it’s time we cut out the middle man and become global citizens
EU membership rendered redundant by global governance,
Global regulators revealed as the real law ‘manufacturers’, whilst the EU is often only the ‘wholesaler’,
Key regulation affecting the UK deliberated at global level and leaving the EU would not diminish British influence,
UK should leave the EU and focus on its position at the global top table,
EU membership has been made redundant by global regulators, according to a new paper from the Adam Smith Institute released today. Published independently of both the major campaigns, the report reveals that the UK often has little say over EU regulation, as in reality so much of it originates at the global level.
Rather than the expected ‘bonfire of regulations’ upon exit, or a situation where the UK is at the mercy of Single Market regulations without having any influence on them, the free-market think tank has highlighted that 80% of Single Market legislation falls within the ambit of existing international organisations and is consequently open to global regulation. The EU itself originates very few market standards and rules, the study shows, despite its sprawling size, and it frequently outsources and copies global agreements verbatim.
The new paper Global Regulators: Stuck in the middle with EU, written by European Union expert and ASI fellow Roland Smith, lays out how the UK’s ability to influence global legislation would change for the better following an exit from the EU.
The author notes that whilst we are told EU membership is necessary so that we “have a say” in the rules affecting our industries, the fact is that everything from fishing to food packaging and car standards to disability rights are now driven by a myriad of global organisations – even the infamous rule on straight cucumbers is now in the hands of a global body.
Contrary to popular belief, the adoption of standards by the EU from bodies such as Codex is not voluntary, and is enforceable by the World Trade Organisation’s Technical Barriers to Trade Agreement. The TBT Agreement makes global bodies the ‘manufacturers’ of the law, whilst the EU is often merely the ‘wholesaler’.
The paper goes on to argue that rather than stay in the EU, the UK should focus on formalising and democratising the UK’s global governance involvement, bringing the UK’s full voice to it as an open, global trading nation. In the context of Brexit, ‘isolation’ is near impossible in the globalised world, in which Britain could operate at the new global top table as opposed to the EU’s shrinking one.
Author of the report Roland Smith said:
“The rhetoric about the UK being isolated is out of place when you consider the global landscape. If the EU didn’t exist, we wouldn’t be in a rush to invent it. The global single market is overtaking the EU, and since we are not in the Euro and have no need for political integration, it is time to leave and take our place as a truly global citizen.”
Sam Bowman, Executive Director of the Adam Smith Institute said:
“This report shows that the strongest argument for staying in the EU is actually rather weak. The EU is increasingly best understood as a regulatory intermediary, codifying for member states rules that have been agreed at an international level. If so, it is not clear at all that the UK would have less influence on global regulation if it left the EU – indeed, paradoxically, Britain may have a louder voice at the top tables if it was outside the EU rather than in.”
Notes to editors:
To download Global Regulators: Stuck in the middle with EU, click here.
For further comments or to arrange an interview, contact Head of Communications Flora Laven-Morris at firstname.lastname@example.org / 07584 778207.
The Adam Smith Institute is a free market, libertarian think tank based in London. It advocates classically liberal public policies to create a richer, freer world.
Latest News from
The King's Fund responds to the Government's adult social care White Paper02/12/2021 09:35:00
Sally Warren, Director of Policy at The King’s Fund commented on the publication of the government’s adult social care reform White Paper, People at the Heart of Care
CMA order for Meta to sell Giphy could undermine digital trade and innovation, says IEA regulation expert01/12/2021 10:10:00
Victoria Hewson, Head of Regulatory Affairs at free market think tank the Institute of Economic Affairs, commented on the news that Facebook’s parent company, Meta, has been ordered to sell Giphy by the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority
JRF responds to extension of Scottish Child Payment30/11/2021 15:15:00
JRF responds to the Scottish Government's plan to double Scottish Child Payment for children under six from April, and all eligible children under 16 by the end of 2022.
New ‘pingdemic’ could cost economy at least £2 billion, says economist30/11/2021 11:35:00
Julian Jessop, Economics Fellow at free market think tank the Institute of Economic Affairs, commented on the planned reintroduction of some Covid measures
IFS - Education spending changes put a major brake on levelling up30/11/2021 10:35:00
The cuts to education spending over the last decade are effectively without precedent in post-war UK history, including a 9% real-terms fall in school spending per pupil and a 14% fall in spending per student in colleges.
Scrap energy price cap to prevent further bailouts, says IEA Analyst26/11/2021 10:35:00
Andy Mayer, Environment, Energy and Infrastructure Analyst at free market think tank the Institute of Economic Affairs, commented on the £1.7bn taxpayer bailout of Bulb Energy
The King’s Fund responds to the Health and Care Bill workforce vote24/11/2021 16:25:00
Richard Murray, Chief Executive of The King’s Fund, commented on MPs voting against a plan to require the publication of health and care workforce projections
IFS - English universities ranked on their contributions to social mobility – and the least selective post-1992 universities come out on top24/11/2021 12:10:00
Universities are seen as crucial engines of social mobility, and perhaps with good reason. Individuals eligible for Free School Meals (FSM) in year 11 who attended university are almost four times more likely to be amongst the highest 20% of earners at age 30 than those who did not, and around ten times more likely if they attended one of the four most selective universities in the country.