Andrew Neil shuts down doubting remoaners as non-EU markets appetite for Britain grows

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The former BBC presenter responded to a Twitter user who claimed he was “ignoring the experts” on the UK’s potential services for Asian imports post-Brexit. The social media user claimed Mr Neil could not name the services Britain could provide to Asian countries after ending the transition period on January 1.

Mr Neil responded the message by pointing out 60 percent of the UK’s pre-coronavirus service exports were to non-EU countries.

He said: “Pre-Covid we exported over £300bn/year in services, 60% to non-EU, running large surplus in services.

“Both overall total and non-EU share growing rapidly year on year.

“Financial, business, telecoms, software, travel, transport, information.”

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Spelling out Britain’s next markets, Mr Neil continued to suggest non-EU markets are growing.

He added: “The non-EU markets we sold into were growing fast and will grow even faster in the 2020s.

“And as they get richer so will their appetite for the sort of sophisticated services we’re already providing.”

When another Twitter user pointed out the Office of National Statistics on international service trading in 2018 said

Europe was the largest export market for the UK, Mr Neil added: “The ONS excludes travel, transport and banking.”

Another Twitter user suggested London would become the “preferred laundromat for dirty money globally” and referred to the bank Standard Charted being ordered to pay £947 million to American agencies in 2019 after allegedly breaching sanctions on Iran.

Mr Neil lashed out at the user, and said: “I’m so sorry for the hurt it causes you when people point out the things our country is really good at.

“I see your pain is such that you are forced to seek solace in things where we still need to clean up our act.

“It is a feature of your cult. FBPEs are blocked, by the way.”

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It comes after the UK and EU agreed a free trade deal on Christmas Eve, which does not cover financial market access and other services.

The Government will start urgent talks next week week to reach an agreement by March for access to EU financial markets.

City minister John Glen and senior Treasury civil servant Katharine Braddick will lead the talks for the UK, with the Mail on Sunday reporting they will meet with financial services lobby groups, including The CityUK and UK Finance, this week to try to secure better access to the EU.

They will also begin dialogue with the EU to forge a “memorandum of understanding” about future financial services access.

L. Alan Winters, director of the U.K. Trade Policy Observatory at the University of Sussex, said to US News one issue with the trade agreement is its exclusion of services, and added “80 percent of British exports are services”.

It also follows trade secretary Liz Truss securing a free trade agreement with Turkey at the end of December, worth £18.6 billion in 2019.

The agreement marks the 63rd trade deal struck within two years for the UK, with 62 countries and the EU according to the Government’s website.

Ms Truss said of the Turkey deal: “It paves the way for a new, more ambitious deal with Turkey in the near future, and is part of our plan to put the UK at the centre of a network of modern agreements with dynamic economies.

“More trade and investment will drive economic growth across our United Kingdom and help us build back stronger from Covid.”

Trade talks with the US, Australia and New Zealand are also still ongoing.

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