Tuesday, February 23, 2021
Brexit began in earnest 50 days ago, on January 1, with the entry into force of the EU–UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement. It is — at least to my mind — the first ever trade agreement that actively seeks to slow down the flow of trade between the two signatory parties. And the costs are mounting for companies on both sides of the English Channel, particularly the British one. And the benefits remain largely elusive. This is no great surprise: Brexit is a process, not an event, and it will take time for most of the benefits of separation from the EU to feed through. Many of the costs, meanwhile, are of immediate impact, although some will no doubt fade as companies adapt to the new procedures.