Even the former Australian prime minister wants you to know that a post-Brexit trade deal isn’t worth it

Moya Lothian-McLean@moya_lm
Thursday 18 June 2020 08:00
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Yesterday Boris Johnson made a big deal about TimTams in a broadcast, to try and rev up excitement for a prospective post-Brexit trade deal with Australia.

As designed, the surreal sight of the prime minister waving a bag of biscuits around to evidence an apparently lucrative opportunity, quickly went viral.

But Boris’ deal might not be as good as he’s making out (shocker).

Former Australian PM Julia Gillard appeared on BBC Breakfast this morning and gently broke down exactly why a trade deal with Australia was nothing to shake a TimTam at.

Admitting that she’d have voted to Remain if she’d been a UK citizen, Gillard went on to say:

A lot gets talked about in terms of trade deals with other countries. There is the prospect of a trade deal with Australia and we’re always open to trade deals, we’re a great trading nation. 

But I do worry that people are starting to imagine that the trade deal with Australia is somehow a substitute for being on the doorstep of a market with 500 million people, it’s not.

Gillard then ranked the UK at the bottom of Australia’s current ‘list’ of nations it enjoys the biggest two-way trading partnership with, placing China, Japan, America, India, New Zealand and Singapore above it.

“If a trade deal boosts that a bit, great,” she finished. “But it’s not going to be a huge economic bonanza given the EU trade issues that will come out of Brexit, subject to how it’s handled”.

Basically: the UK is small fry now.

Oh well, we might be losing a massive trading partner and gaining a minor one in return but at least we have TimTams.

Boris says that’s worth it, and he can’t be wrong.

Right?

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