David Cameron’s formal letter/threat that officially opens pandora’s box for the UK

"I will open pandora's box with my bare hands and then BOOM!", Mr Cameron might as well be saying to Donald Tusk. Photo taken from the last EU Council on 15-16 October 2015. From left to right: Mr David CAMERON, UK Prime Minister; Mr Donald TUSK, President of the European Council (European Council TVNewsroom, 15/10/2015).

“I will open pandora’s box with my bare hands and then BOOM!”, Mr Cameron might as well be saying to Donald Tusk. Photo taken from the last EU Council on 15-16 October 2015. From left to right: Mr David CAMERON, UK Prime Minister; Mr Donald TUSK, President of the European Council (European Council TVNewsroom, 15/10/2015).

One of the most ambitious promises UK’s Prime Minister David Cameron made during the last years was to hold a referendum on the UK’s relationship with the European Union.

But after some time in which the attention was being dragged away by some major evolutions in the news agenda like the escalation of the migrants crisis or the Volkswagen scandal, Mr. Cameron finally decided it was high time for a revamped settlement over the ‘Brexit’ question. Indeed, with what many media outlets in Europe already call the “strongest warning”, UK’s Prime Minister is expected to tell his fellow European leaders today that he might back Britain leaving the EU after all, unless his demands for a radical reform of the bloc are heard. You heard right.

Formal demands

The main UK and EU media reported last Saturday that the British Prime Minister is finally going to formally table his long due wish list and ask for some must-haves like for instance a four-year ban on EU migrants claiming in-work benefits after entering the UK. That will be done in the form of a letter to European Council president Donald Tusk. The letter is due to officially open the “Brexit pandora box”, and subsequently mark the beginning of long and painful negotiations between his highly eurosceptic “Tory team” and main EU senior representatives, from now till the crack of dawn, or accurately said until his promised in/out UK referendum “before 2017”.

A direct threat

Moreover, in that letter-threat, Mr. Cameron will say that if no deal can be reached, he could officially back a British exit during the campaign ahead the in/out referendum before 2017. “If we can’t reach such an agreement, and if Britain’s concerns were to be met with a deaf ear – which I do not believe will happen – then we will have to think again about whether this European Union is right for us,” Mr. Cameron is expected to say, according to advance extracts of his speech “leaked” by his cabinet in London. “As I have said before, I rule nothing out”, he added.

“Fundamental changes”

UK’s Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond also made his echo voice heard. Speaking on Television Sunday AT BBC’s Andrew Marr Show, he said the letter to Tusk won’t include “detailed legislative changes”, but that it is all about a “fundamental change in the direction of travel of the European Union”. “We don’t want to be excessively prescriptive at the beginning of the discussion,” he underscored. “This letter is not the end of the process, it is the beginning of the process”, he added.

So the Brexit thing comes under the spotlight again, after a few, moderately quiet months. Surely business in the Brexit scenario is still the biggest question mark, as it has always been. Mr. Cameron is indeed expected to speak about economic stability. “What would being outside the European Union mean for our economic security?”, he “will” ask President Tusk – which is quite a long question. Let’s try to see how the markets are talking about Brexit.

Risks for Business

A recent study by Bank of America Merrill Lynch indeed warned of heavy near-term negative impacts on the economy of the United Kingdom and even a potential pound sterling crisis. The study issued by BofA, in a few words, reveals that the value of the GBP relies heavily on the flow of money into the UK made by inward investment.

Investors want of course a stable political environment and the uncertainty an in/out referendum would eventually bring is definitely not a bright element at all. “In our view there would be serious economic fall-out for the UK in the short- and long-term if voters choose to leave the EU,” according to that study by BofA Merrill Lynch. Also, Bank of America’s analysts also stress that the UK will lose global influence if it is to exit the EU.

Fragility

Similarly, the Financial Times reported recently that the chief executive of Goldman Sachs’ European investment business warned that a potential UK exit from the EU would “seriously damage” the British economy. As reported by FT, Mr. Andrew Wilson, who has managed the European business of Goldman Sachs Asset Management since 2006, said: “The economic argument for [Britain] staying in the EU is pretty compelling”.

Of course, not everyone agrees with those scenarios, but the economic situation for the UK after a Brexit now seems to be a bit more fragile than expected. As previously said, there are many open discussions around a British exit from the European Union, and Business is undeniably the biggest one.

“Real problems”

Prime Minister David Cameron seems now more determined than ever before to deliver a strong message to the EU leaders, rather than keeping the markets at peace. “Those who believe we should stay in the EU at all costs need to explain why Britain should accept the status quo. I am clear that there are real problems with this” he is expected to say to President Tusk.

Opening pandora’s box

All in all, David Cameron, following his predecessors and a traditional political game in Britain over the position of the country within the EU, decided to play the UK in or out referendum card back in 2013. The real problem that 10 Downing Street is facing though is that almost all political leaders of Britain played with the exceptionalist sentiment of the British people, manipulated to a bigger or smaller extent, but at the end of the day none of them did pull the trigger.

David Cameron instead, this successful young and bold politician, thought it was a good idea to actually open pandora’s box so that he gets re-elected. The biggest issue with that, while he is slowly and steadily placing his hands around the box, is that neither him, nor President Tusk, not even God know the catastrophies that this damn box is hiding inside.

Is it worth it in 2015 fragile global economic environment to open abyss’s gates just to get re-elected? If not, is it worth it then doing that just to stay in power as Prime Minister? In other words, when Winston Churchill once said “we are in Europe but not of it”, was it to polarise his electorate based on pop exceptionalist myths and ghosts or to jump off the cliff like Mr Cameron feels like doing recently?

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

the European Sting Milestones

Featured Stings

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

Inegalitarian taxation on labour haunts Europe’s social model

The West – the EU and the US – is writing off Turkey’s Erdogan

This is what the world’s CEOs think about the global outlook

Prolonged economic crisis and drought demands urgent response for Zimbabwe’s ‘hardest hit’: UN relief chief

We can’t tell if we’re closing the digital divide without more data

Western Balkans: European Parliament takes stock of 2018 progress

Egypt is building one of the world’s largest solar parks

China revisited by the former Ambassador of Hungary to China

For the future of Europe youth remains a priority

Yellen and Draghi tell Trump and markets not to expedite the next crisis

Berlin’s governing elite leads Eurozone to recession to win the September election in Germany

This graphene battery can recharge itself to provide unlimited clean energy

Strengthening security through an EU-wide information system

Fighting for minds of youth in Latvia

How do we make artificial intelligence more humane?

Fostering global citizenship in medicine

General Elections in Spain: Twitter organises the first digital debate to empower young people.

Is China about to launch its own cryptocurrency?

EU Commission indifferent on Court of Auditors’ recommendations

The China-US trade deal will be signed on time; the path is set

Leveraging digital for high quality internships

Young people worldwide can ‘determine the future of migration,’ says UN senior official

Air pollution could be responsible for 1 in 7 new cases of diabetes

‘Bring to life’ precious moments caught on film or tape, UN agency urges on World Day

We underestimate the power of data at our peril. This is why

Antitrust: Commission imposes binding obligations on Gazprom to enable free flow of gas at competitive prices in Central and Eastern European gas markets

Draghi, Letta: All Eurozone countries must be able to borrow like Germany

Students in Milan are moving in with the elderly to fight loneliness and save money

ECB: Euro area should smooth out the consumption and income shocks of its members

The EU slowly exits from “Excessive Deficit Procedure” and hopefully from ‘Excessive Austerity Procedure’ too

Banking Union: ECOFIN and Parliament ready to compromise

Libya: $202 million needed to bring life-saving aid to half a million people hit by humanitarian crisis

Women’s empowerment ‘essential to global progress’ says Guterres, marking International Day

100 years after Polish independence, 5 reasons to be cheerful for the future

UN, Egypt help avert another Israel-Palestine war in Gaza that was ‘minutes away’, Security Council hears

Brexit update: Leave campaign leads race but undecided voters will determine the outcome of the EU referendum

UK must make clear what it wants, MEPs say in Brexit debate

Out with the old: Young People transforming Humanitarian Action

Advancing multilateralism goes ‘hand-in-hand’ with work of the UN

In China things are moving in the right direction

The IMF sees Brexit’s ‘substantial impact’ while the world’s economy holds its breath

ECOFIN: Choosing between the re-unification of Eurozone and a stalemate

Commission: New proposal for centrally managed bank resolution

UN official sees ‘unprecedented opportunities’ to make progress on peace in Afghanistan

Joris in Indonesia

This heroic doctor is waging war on rape and the stigma around it

Want a Sustainable Earth? Bring on the Fourth Industrial Revolution

Ebola outbreak in DR Congo conflict zone ‘remains dangerous and unpredictable’ – UN chiefs

The US calls off globalization, targets Germany. Paris offer to Berlin comes at a cost

The Catcher in the Rice

Data and the future of financial services

Trump fines China with $50 billion a year plus some more…

Syrian Government’s ‘different understanding’ of UN role, a ‘very serious challenge’ – Special Envoy

UN must provide redress for minorities placed in toxic Kosovo camps, says rights expert

Mine ban agreement ‘has saved countless lives’, but ‘accelerated efforts’ needed to end scourge for good: Guterres

‘Comprehensively include migrants’ or sustainable development won’t happen, warns General Assembly President

Finally an answer to the hottest question of European youth today: How to make sure Juncker’s Investment Plan works for youth

UN sounds alarm as Venezuelan refugees and migrants passes three million mark

After globalization what? Europe’s long, straining shake-up post Davos wreckage

MWC 2016 LIVE: Stripe gives payments leg-up to startups in emerging markets

More Stings?

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s