60-40 chance at a ‘no deal’ Brexit, trade secretary says
What does that mean for Britain? Depends who you ask.
Liam Fox, who's in charge of international trade in the government, says the odds that Britain will come out of the EU without any kind of special arrangements or deal are now 60-40.
What it means: Depends who you ask. A hardline pro-Brexiteer will say that's a good thing - no EU regulations whatsoever, freedom to create our own individual deals with different countries, a 'clean break'.
Others will say even if you believe in Brexit, it's still a bad thing. Outside of the EU, Britain falls under the rules of what's called the 'World Trade Organisation', who basically govern trade between countries who don't have special deals. Under their rules, you still have 'tariffs' or taxes on trade, and customs inspections. Implementing those in time is going be tough.
Remainers will say a no deal Brexit is a bad thing in and of itself. We'll be out of all EU regulations but will obviously still need some rules for things like aircrafts, medicines, nuclear materials, food - so we'll have to write all those new regulations ourselves, in time.
They'd also probably point to analysis by the International Monetary Fund which says Britain will see a 4% drop in GDP if no-deal happens, which means the total value of all the goods and services produced in the UK would drop by 4%. According to BuzzFeed, a government research paper came to pretty much the same conclusion a few months ago - but they didn't publish it because, as put by the anonymous government source, 'it's embarassing'.