Alex Dawson, UK Politics and Policy Practice Lead at Global Counsel: As Conservative leadership contenders get ready for the minute Theresa May announces her resignation, prevailing wisdom in Westminster is that the winner will be the one who most successfully reflects the party’s membership on Brexit. As with all simple wisdoms, the truth is more complex. There is more at play than Brexit in winning the votes of the Tory faithful, and candidates who want to win the peace, and the war, will welcome a longer campaign that focuses on the other big issues facing the country.
Matt Chorley is joined by Alex Dawson, a former Home Office adviser to Theresa May who became her political director in No 10, now a Practice Lead at Global Counsel, who describes how a short leadership campaign left her unprepared for what came next.
Britain’s failure to achieve a withdrawal agreement with the EU has had a very negative impact on the UK’s relationships in Asia and it could deal a serious blow to its trade with the region. “New agreements will need to be negotiated,” Ying Staton, Head of Asia at Global Counsel said. However, “Some countries have made it clear that the UK will need to offer deep concessions, if they are to secure the same preferential terms that were extended to the EU.”
Peter Mandelson, co-founder and chairman at Global Counsel and former European Union trade official, discusses the potential for a Brexit extension and the need for citizens to approve the final deal.
U.S. and European trade negotiators face growing domestic pressure over agriculture, with clashing demands threatening to rekindle a tit-for-tat economic war. U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom will meet in Washington on Wednesday for their fifth round of talks, now under pressure to avoid a fight over agriculture that neither appears to want. “It’s hard to see how you bridge the gap,” said Stephen Adams, Global Counsel. If Mr. Lighthizer faces political pressure to demand quick EU concessions on agriculture, “then the EU has fairly limited room for maneuver.”
Alex Dawson, Practice Lead for UK Politics and Policy at Global Counsel, discusses most recent Brexit developments.
Whatever accommodation is reached in the current US-China trade conflict, there is no doubt that the global trading system has entered 2019 in a state of crisis. While it may be easy to point the finger at United States President Donald Trump, broader structural and political forces have been weakening the international system for quite some time. Peter Mandelson, Global Counsel Chairman, for China Daily.
The UK’s charm offensive in south-east Asia is meant to be a bold marker of post-Brexit international ambition — but to some it smacks of a desperation to retrofit a “global Britain” foreign policy as the EU exit door fast approaches. (...) “Most south-east Asians I talk to — regardless of their respect for the UK — see Brexit as a remarkable act of self-harm,” comments Ying Staton, Head of Asia at Global Counsel. “People here feel an intellectual and cultural affinity for Britain but its economic relevance has for some time been dwarfed by China and other parts of Asia.”
Global trade war "We're not in a trade war yet, but we're in the risk of a trade war," explains Gregor Irwin, chief economist from Global Counsel. "One of the concerns of a trade war is that it wouldn't just involve the US and China. It would inevitably drag in other countries as well, or other countries would be caught up in the crossfire between the US and China."
Not long after the UK voted to leave the EU, Angela Merkel’s staff jested that they could write a short script for Theresa May to put Britain in a better negotiating position.
“There is an interesting point where Ireland ceases to be an asset and becomes a liability for the EU,” said Stephen Adams, Senior Director at Global Counsel. “We are not there yet but we may get there. It is looking like a pretty intractable problem. And Merkel is like anyone at that level of diplomacy: they don’t like intractable problems.”