Press

Letters: Trade-offs

Sam Lowe
09 May 2019
Prospect
Liam Fox says in your trade supplement (“A world beyond Europe,” May) that he wants a “global agreement on services” with Britain at the helm. He makes the point that distance does not constrain trade in services to the same extent it does goods. This is true, but it risks underplaying the impact of geography. Distance does still matter when it comes to trading services cross-border—a 10 per cent increase in distance between countries reduces services trade by 7 per cent. There will be new opportunities for UK services exporters in the future, but the government would be wise to manage expectations. Sam Lowe, Centre for European Reform

Europe's 'Nationalism' turns out to be local

Christian Odendahl, John Springford
09 May 2019
The Wall Street Journal
A new report this week from the London-based think-tank the Centre for European Reform digs into the economic dimension of these divides, and it illuminates a mess. The EU’s most economically successful member-states, such as Britain, nonetheless contain regions with productivity comparable to Greece’s. Manufacturing’s decline is serious in Western Europe but perhaps somewhat misunderstood. Industrial output in countryside regions more than doubled between 1980 and 2015, although that tended to involve a shift into higher-tech manufacturing.

QMV + CFSP = A-OK

09 May 2019
Berlin Policy Journal
It is too easy for individual member states to block EU sanctions or diplomatic statements. Extending majority voting to foreign policy would encourage greater unity. 

CER podcast: A guide to the Spanish election

08 May 2019
Sophia Besch asks Camino Mortera-Martinez to talk through the Spanish election results.

Parliament Live: Exiting the European Union Committee

08 May 2019
Charles Grant, director of the Centre for European Reform joined Sir Jonathan Faull, Chair of European Public Affairs, Brunswick Group and Larissa Brunner, Policy Analyst, European Policy Centre to give evidence on the progress of the UK’s negotiations on EU withdrawal.

Draghi succession may go down to wire unless EU sorts other jobs

Christian Odendahl
08 May 2019
“Whatever happens with the commission top job, then the ECB can be decided afterwards,” said Christian Odendahl, chief economist at Centre for European Reform in Berlin. “The commission seems to me a much more complicated decision politically. The ECB top job will probably be a part of the horse-trading at the end, but that’s not the priority.”

These maps show how ridiculously unequal Britain’s economy is

John Springford, Christian Odendahl
08 May 2019
CityMetric
Britain is a rich country: this relaxed assumption about our place in the economic pecking order has helped fuel everything from Brexit to the complacency that led to Brexit.

UK and Ireland agree to maintain common travel area after Brexit

Sam Lowe
08 May 2019
The Financial Times
Sam Lowe, a senior research fellow at the Centre for European Reform, said that the agreement should be “celebrated” but warned “it does not tell us anything about how goods will be treated when they cross the border between Ireland and Northern Ireland post-Brexit”. He added: “While the common travel area was always designated an issue to be negotiated and resolved by the UK and Ireland bilaterally, the external trade policy of the EU is very much not.”

Just four countries and one man want the UK to remain in the EU, says Labour MP

08 May 2019
Yahoo News
Charles Grant, director for the Centre for European Reform, argued that nobody knows what countries truly think as there has been no formal requirement to make public their position.Mr Grant claimed French leader Emmanuel Macron was “isolated” in his “tactical” position at the last European council summit when he pushed for a short extension against the majority who backed Angela Merkel view that “if you give them a very long extension, Eurosceptics will think Brexit will never happen and vote” for the withdrawal agreement.

Grayling TV: The EU elections aftermath

06 May 2019
This week we speak to Camino Mortera, a senior research fellow for the Centre of European Reform. Camino is a specialist on justice and home and European affairs. This time, she talks to David Simon, head of Public Affairs Grayling on predictions after the EU elections.

Can Theresa May reach a Brexit deal with Labour?

Sam Lowe
03 May 2019
Politico
Sam Lowe, a trade expert and senior research fellow at the Centre for European Reform think-tank, believes a compromise government-Labour proposal could end up looking a lot like part 23 of this document, which states that “the economic partnership should ensure no tariffs, fees, charges or quantitative restrictions across all sectors, with ambitious customs arrangements.”The phrasing, Lowe said, “can be read to achieve both [the government’s future relationship proposal, agreed by ministers last year at] Chequers and a customs union, depending on your priority.”

UK Huawei leak exposes post-Brexit security peril

02 May 2019
Bloomberg
“There are different concepts of what Britain should be afterwards,” said Ian Bond, director of foreign policy at the Centre for European Reform. “Probably, most of the rivals to succeed Theresa May would want the UK to be out there as a great trading nation, however that pans out in practice. But within the Conservative Party there is also a strong strand of economic nationalism that would say we don’t want to let in all this foreign stuff.”

Brexit means … European Parliament elections?

02 May 2019
Clingendael
Almost three years after the historic vote to leave the European Union, Britain is destined to participate in the European Parliament elections against the express wishes of most politicians on both sides of the Channel.
Parliament Live: Exiting the European Union Committee

Parliament Live: Exiting the European Union Committee

Sam Lowe
01 May 2019
Sam Lowe, a senior research fellow at the Centre for European Reform, along with David Henig Director, Dr Pınar Artıran and Ruth Lea CBE, gave evidence on the progress of the UK’s negotiations on EU withdrawal. 
Read transcript here.

May weighs remaining in EU customs union

Sam Lowe
01 May 2019
Financial Times
Sam Lowe of the Centre for European Reform, a think-tank, said: “Being in such a customs union would place no constraints on the UK’s ability to negotiate in the areas of services, intellectual property, public procurement, data and regulatory barriers to trade in goods.”

High heels, tiny bikinis and Soviet nostalgia: Why is Miss USSR happening in London?

27 April 2019
The Independent
“It shows a serious lack of taste and historical awareness,” former British ambassador to Latvia Ian Bond told The Independent, now foreign policy director at the Centre for European Reform.“Imagine if someone organised a 'Miss Third Reich' competition for women from countries occupied by the Nazis? Or even 'Miss British Empire'?!” he adds. 

Italy and the EP elections

26 April 2019
Clingendael
The European Parliament elections will be a crucial test for all political forces in Italy, and could accelerate the end of the uncomfortable coalition between the right-wing anti-immigration League, and the populist Five Star Movement (5S).

CER podcast: Europe and Saudi Arabia after Khashoggi

Sophia Besch, Beth Oppenheim
24 April 2019
Sophia Besch asks Beth Oppenheim whether the European-Saudi relationship has changed after the murder of Jamal Khashoggi last October.

The European Parliament’s big Brexit problem

Agata Gostyńska-Jakubowska
24 April 2019
Politico
“British MEPs will have to be included in the whole game of thrones,” said Agata Gostyńska-Jakubowska, senior research fellow at the Centre for European Reform think tank. “These elections, irrespective of the result they will bring, will bring a certain chaos in the internal working of the European Parliament.”

Britain ‘could survive no-deal Brexit with AAA rating intact’

23 April 2019
The Times
In the meantime, the UK will “grow at a slower pace than under no Brexit”. However, it claimed that “in the absence of a disorderly no-deal exit, the initial shock to the UK economy has to some extent already fed through”. It cited research by the Centre for European Reform, which estimated the cost at 2.3 per cent of GDP since the June 2016 referendum.