Elections in UK with a bated breath
Election day in the UK is coming soon and Europe is waiting for the results with bated breath. In Brussels, the capital city of the EU, many people are planning to be directly involved in the elections, debates will also follow in the next days, the atmosphere is tense for the possible referendum following the elections to vote on the exit of UK from EU. In the meantime, it is estimated that the major economic damage would be for England with over 300 billion euro of losses.
- Wednesday, 06 May 2015
In front of the eyes, there is also the political fragmentation that reflects internal divisions in the country, as it showed in the analysis of the German think tank Bertelsmann Stiftung that summarizes the British political situation by reporting a sentence from an article on the Economist of last February: the Scottish National Party (SNP), which wants Scotland out of Britain; the UK Independence Party (UKIP), which wants Britain out of Europe.
A referendum to exit or remain in Europe has been promised by the British conservative prime minister David Cameron in case of his reelection: at the moment 60% of English citizens, according to data of the think tank Chatman House, are supporters of the referendum, while 24% of people would not want it. Furthermore it seems that a slim majority, 40%, would vote to stay in EU, versus 39% who would be in favour of a Brexit.
The role of the Scottish National Party
According to the German think tank the Scottish National Party (SNP) it is at least as influential as UKIP of Nigel Farage, that is allied with the Five Stars Movement in the European Parliament. In the last years SNP has gained a strong following and now it counts approximately 90 thousands supporters. In the national elections 59 seats in the House of Commons are allocated to Scotland, 55 of them could be win from SNP in the next elections. Furthermore while Ukip and Greens refused any coalition , SNP that is pro-European does not rule this out. In general it seems largely in agreement with Labour on social issues and so it would be a potential coalition partner and a serious alternative to the Liberal and Democrats.
After the elections on 7th May also the parliamentary system will change : the parliamentary system based on two parties will be passed by a fragmentary system in seven parties that will give rise to different coalitions and will reflect the increase of internal social and geographical divisions in UK. The parties represented in the House of Commons will be the two major parties, the Conservative Party and the Labour Party, the Liberal and Democrats, the Ukip, Greens , the Scottish National Party and Plaid Cymru of Wales.
Brexit, economic losses for UK
According to a recent study, the Bertelsmann Stiftung think tank as reported from East, it is estimated that if England would leave Europe it will have a decline in the GDP per capita by 2030, between 0.6% and 3% less than if the UK remains in the EU. That would mean as well a decrease in exports and in more expensive imports. While taking into account the effects of the economic integration on the investments and innovation , a Brexit would increase the real GDP losses by 14%. Furthermore UK would have very few incomes from the Brexit : it would save just 0.5% of the British GDP.
That’s why of course England would be the biggest looser from its choice to exit from EU, because according to the authors of the research the economic disadvantages for Europe would be manageable. In general for all the EU member states, a decline in the GDP per capita is estimated to be between 0.1% and roughly 0.4% due to reduced trading activity with United Kingdom. Ireland would be particularly hit with real income losses between 0.8% and nearly 2.7 % . Followed by Luxembourg, Belgium, Sweden, Malta and Cyprus. While for Germany by 2030 losses in the real GDP would be slightly less than the average for the EU-27, between 0.1% and 0.3%.