The European Union might have won a Nobel Prize for Peace, but when it comes to international negotiations, they won’t be getting many prizes for it any time soon.
After the Swiss won a referendum to cap the number of EU workers entering their country, Brussels had a tantrum and cancelled negotiations over many areas of EU-Swiss cooperation. But much like their misguided attempts to rein in Russia, it became obvious this approach was not going to work. The Swiss were not going to be bullied into surrendering control of their own borders.
Which is why according to Reuters, negotiations between Brussels and Bern to establish a single energy market have resumed. The goal of having a single energy market is of great importance to the EU especially now tensions are so fraught with Russia, a country with vast reserves of gas which supplies a large proportion of Europe’s energy.
The EU needs Switzerland to have any hope of achieving its aim. The EU also needs Britain, one of only 4 Member States with a net contribution to Brussels, to carry on funding their expensive and ultimately unnecessary projects. If Britain succeeds in unchaining itself from Brussels there will be another inevitable (but short-lived) tantrum before they sit down to negotiate.
Despite the Eurocrats’ delusions of grandeur, the EU is a paper tiger and not the superpower it wishes it was. Whether it is dealing with small nations like Switzerland and Iceland, or large wealthy nations like Britain, the EU is not the juggernaut its supporters portray it to be. The EU’s failure to bully the Faroe Islands over their fishing rights is ample evidence of that. Their numerous threats against Switzerland have proven empty and feeble.
Undoubtedly the Europeans would be riled if the Great British Public opts to leave their failed political project in ‘Cast Iron’ Dave’s promised In/Out referendum in 2017. As we approach this date, they may threaten to cut off trade, or any other wildly impossible response, should we vote to restore British Parliamentary democracy.
What the British people must remember is, the EU needs friendly post-Brexit relations with us far more than we do with them. After we Get Britain Out of the EU, its Member States will continue to trade with us, just as they always have. Brussels will not dare disrupt our trade with Europe (especially with so many Eurozone countries in dire straits), but will accept a change in circumstances after a considerable amount of wailing and gnashing of teeth.