With the UK set to depart the EU this Friday, and in the spirit of not coming across as remoaner snowflakes, we decided to ask each Medway political party about the sunlit uplands on the Brexit horizon.
As usual, we told all of them that we would publish their responses unedited. You can find them below in the order they were received.
With the UK now scheduled to leave the EU on January 31, what will be first major positive to come out of our departure?
After the 31st, the UK will negotiate and sign new trade deals with countries that have no existing EU deals – such as the United States. The UK will leave EU trade agreements, but negotiate its own separate agreements with other countries.
The EU does not currently have a trade agreement with the United States and negotiations over the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) were frozen in 2016. After the 31st, the UK will negotiate its own trade agreement with the United States. Counting the EU countries separately, the USA is the UK’s largest trading partner, making up just under 15% of trade.
The UK will also need to negotiate a free trade deal with the EU to ensure that UK goods are not subject to tariffs and other trade barriers after the transition period ends on 31 December 2020.
Medway Liberal Democrats
The one immediate positive which comes from the departure on 31st January is that neither Nigel Farage or Daniel Hannan represents Medway in the European Parliament.
There remains a number of risks to Medway moving forward.
Vince Maple, Leader, Medway Labour
The Green Party still strongly believes, that leaving the EU is a mistake and we fear for our rights here in the UK and for those on “foreign” shores. The Government’s amendment to the EU Withdrawal Agreement Bill, to remove the right of refugee children to join their family here in the UK, is I fear just a glimpse of what lies ahead. As we enter a nationalist phase in our history, Medway Green Party will continue to support our rich culturally diverse communities and fight politically for those not afforded a voice.
As the bell strikes midnight on Friday 31st January, many around the country will be celebrating, but an almost equal number will yet again be feeling the sadness and despair that was felt most recently on the 12th December 2019 and whilst we congratulate the victors, we console those amongst us, who want a fairer, more inclusive society and those who can see climate chaos and injustice all around.
Perhaps this new chapter, will be auspicious and the UK will remain as one. But just in case we will prepare for tougher times and seek out and take advantage of, every opportunity to nurture cohesion. We will work with Medway Labour, Medway Lib Dems, Medway XR and even progressive Conservatives and UKIP members and a whole host of community projects & groups to inform our constituents and local businesses of the biggest threat that humankind has ever faced… Climate Collapse & Ecological Destruction. It is essential that we as humans work together, regardless of our political home, to limit the impact to our children, grandchildren and all future generations.
Next Friday as I think to the future and of those I love, I will raise a glass to forgiveness, purpose and hope, I invite you to join me.
Kate Belmonte, Medway Green Party
Without the hard work and commitment of many UKIP members, Brexit would not be happening and the British people would not be going forward and gaining control of our borders, money, laws and our fishing waters. The fight is not over for UKIP as Parliament is still filled with very large numbers of self-interested MPs who spent the last three and a half years engaged in anti-Brexit Project Fear and scaremongering in the hope of preventing Brexit.
UKIP will still be holding the Conservative Government to account to seize the economic and political opportunities of Brexit. A sovereign UK trade policy offers new opportunities for Britain and British people especially young people with new global opportunities previously denied by the self-interested EU. In the next ten to fifteen years, 90% of world growth is forecast to come from outside the EU. Economic forecasters have advised businesses to lift their horizons to take advantage of Brexit. Companies that focus on markets outside the EU outpaced those exporting predominately to EU states.
Roy Freshwater, Chair, Rochester and Strood UKIP
We received no response to this question from Medway Conservatives.