Not only progressive voters, but also conservative voters in the UK are questioning whether Brexit is a good idea. Not because the economy is slowing, but mainly because immigrants continue to flow, he writes Robert de Witt.
Few Dutch people know who is the mayor of Berlin, Paris, Rome or London. Makes sense, because what does this local foreign official have to do with matters at play in the Netherlands?
Despite this, the Mayor of London’s speech received a lot of attention here last week. This had something to do with his complaint, because it confirmed what many Dutch people also believed: Brexit was a big mistake.
Robert de Witt He is the deputy editor-in-chief EW. He writes a weekly column on global developments and their consequences for the Netherlands and Europe
Face the hard truth about Brexit
Mayor Sadiq Khan has said that Brexit will have dire economic consequences for his city and country. London would have lost a lot of ground to the financial centers of the European mainland. After years of denial, we must face the hard truth: Brexit isn’t working. It has weakened our economy (…) and damaged our reputation.”
If someone actually says what you think, then of course it’s nice to hear it. This is why the Dutch media has been quoting Khan. It seems that the departure of the British is still a sensitive topic for many Dutch people. He is perhaps more sensitive than other Europeans, with whom there are fewer discussions about Brexit almost three years after the official exit on January 31, 2020.
This was because many of the Dutch considered the British as natural allies. Because the UK and the Netherlands are both free economies, and with their traditions as maritime nations, they are also more globally oriented than other EU countries.
After Brexit, the Netherlands had to look for new alliances
Moreover, it was good that the Netherlands had a strong ally in the United Kingdom against France and Germany, those other great powers in Europe who often made things up without The Hague being able to exert much influence over them. After Brexit, the Netherlands had to look for new alliances.
Mourning is somewhat deeper in the Netherlands than anywhere else in the European Union. Perhaps the hope is that things will work out a bit more here. Figures on the economic damage of Brexit are being eagerly shared in the Netherlands. Because, in the eyes of the critics, they prove how unwise the British are. Politicians like Khan get all the attention on this shore of the North Sea for the same reason.
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