Frontier Economics chairman Lord Gus O'Donnell and former Australian Minister for Trade Andrew Robb AO presented to a full house at the 'Brexit & Australia" event in Singapore held on 25 September.
The audience was treated to the unique perspectives in government and international trade offered by both presenters, with the occasional controversial statement thrown in!
The Frontier chairman spoke about how Brexit came to pass and the decisions made by the British Government along the way, stretching over three years and three Prime Ministers . He also spoke about the challenges faced by the current government in trying to negotiate a deal that would result in the UK leaving the EU in a more orderly fashion than crashing out with no deal Such a deal would mark the end of the beginning of the negotiations required between the UK and the EU. The next stage is to sort out the details of the UK’s trading relationship with the EU,to replace the deals the EU has with other countries and to negotiate trade deals with countries like Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the USA.
Andrew Robb drew parallels between Australia’s program of microeconomic reforms in the 70s and 80s to show that while that transition was difficult, it was followed by substantial economic growth as the country became more liberalised and trade opened up. The parallel drawn with Brexit is that it may have long term beneficial effects on trade, particularly with countries outside of the EU (e.g., Australia). The discussion was moderated by Juliette Saly from Bloomberg Radio & Television.
Frontier Economics was delighted to sponsor this event as part of our 20th anniversary celebrations.