The UK’s future economic partnership with the EU: what do we need to know

By Mike McKeon, Chair of the ICAS Brexit Advisory Group

6 March 2018

Mike McKeon CA, Chair of the ICAS Brexit Advisory Group, sets out the key points from the Prime Minister’s Brexit speech of 2 March.

On Friday 2 March, 2018 the Prime Minister Theresa May gave an important speech on Brexit.

This was a speech about “post Brexit” Britain, but also about the UK approach to the negotiations including description of the phases to go through and the potential content of any outcomes.

This is the first time the Prime Minister has outlined what the UK wishes to achieve in the negotiations as well as to sustain a relationship beyond.

There was evocation of the need for “bold and creative thinking” and the presentation of evidence where “mutual interest” should drive outcomes.

New and older concepts of “trusted trading” partners and “mutual recognition” were addressed along with “mirrored” arrangements to allow for frictionless movement of goods.

There was also a call for mutual recognition of qualifications to allow for the better movement of people who deliver services in our economy and the economies of the EU.

The detail on how financial services might operate was however left for the Chancellor to address in a speech this week.

There was confirmation of the UK’s intention to leave the Single Market and why this was in the interest of a post Brexit UK and in the interest of the EU – again the concept of “mutual interest”.

This was accompanied with some “hard facts” that the people of the UK, and the EU, need to face up to.

The speech was broken down into a number of areas, each of which was addressed in some detail.  These include:

  1. Approach to the negotiations.
  2. The phases of the negotiations.
  3. The new UK/EU relationship – how to build a new economic partnership.
  4. The Northern Ireland question.
  5. Facing up to some hard facts.
  6. A future economic partnership and “the five foundations”.
  7. Trade in goods.
  8. Trade in services.


  • Political landscape

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