24 Nov Is there a concerted effort to frustrate Brexit?
I love the radio, wake to it, fall asleep to it, drive with it on, but of late I’ve had to limit my daily dosage. As Boris would say it’s gloom and doom and a festival of whinge-o-rama!
But amongst the negativity there are some real gems. If only the media would allow a cross-section of the public to be heard and not be drowned out by lobby groups, association heads, federation figures, all of whom are on the producer’s speed dial and there to fill in time on the radio.
I’d say it’s pretty safe to say these affiliated ‘talking heads’ have a vested interest to give a negative spin; it expands their job remit, keeps them needed by an industry which ‘could be on the brink!’ But I say we’d all get a better view of what’s happening and get a more moderate picture of the changes that are happening if we could see the full 360 degrees picture.
There is some potential for real transformation of the UK Plc. For it’s inaccurate to see or portray Brexit purely through a prism of negativity and by doing so we’ll make wrong connections, draw wrong conclusions and make wrong decisions.
And just by way of a reminder – remember how wrong these predictions have been so far for 2015/16 – nobody saw a Conservative Government being elected, the Brexit vote coming or President Trump in the Whitehouse. Each time bad information provided for bad predictions.
Not only have we had bad predictions we’ve had bad forecasts too – like when I was Employment Minister it was forecasted there would be 1million more people unemployed, completely wrong – employment actually went up by 2 million! Not only that, we had record breaking rises, the highest rises since employment records began. Also at the same time, you may remember, the Bank of England stated that if unemployment fell below 7% interest rates would have to rise, they said that every month, month on month whilst I was Minister, they eventually stopped because it was getting embarrassing. It’s now 3 years later, unemployment stands at 4.8% and they never put interest rates up!
Away from wrong predictions and narrow, negative stories, here’s some of the tiny gems that are managing to sneak out….
There are British engineering and manufacturing companies seeing their second half of year turnover (since Brexit) increase because of the depreciation of the pound increasing sales abroad.
Here’s a number of international companies that have opted to expand in
Britain since Brexit. They don’t have jitters so why should our media? CEO of Google said computer science has a great future in Britain. Facebook has said it’ll expand it’s presence in Britain by 50%. Adobe software giant is now expanding in UK and Global Testing Centre (GTC) – the largest specialist software testing centre in the Southern Hemisphere – has ambitious growth plans for the UK after Brexit and so the list grows ….
Interesting radio snippet on British flower growers. An industry which has shrunk over the years is now, post Brexit, looking to grow and that’s because as the European imports have become more expensive it’s allowing space for the British flower growers to get back into the marketplace and grow its industry.
The British food industry – unexpected surge in sales outside Europe. For whilst Europe is our biggest export market, in the last 6 months exports outside the EU have rocketed.
British tourism industry saw a billion pound bonanza after Brexit – again as the pound fell Britain became the place to go.
Gloom and doom of the FTSE 250 hasn’t happened – it has gone up
Despair of the FTSE 100 didn’t happen – yes it fell initially and then picked up.
Consumer confidence didn’t drop off a cliff – high street spending is up year on year
Industry confidence didn’t drop off a cliff either.
All defied the pre Brexit predictions. But if we keep talking down the UK, its strengths, successes and USPs – we could bring well these negative predictions upon ourselves.
Together we need to stop the negativity and march to the beat of the industrialists, manufacturers, growers and creators in this country.
So let’s start getting their stories out there. Find out this information and not just get drowned out by a narrow focus on negative news.
Yes it’s true Britain has got used to cheap imports and yes we’ve got used to factoring these into out weekly and monthly budget. But the other side of the coin of these cheap imported products, is the fact that we allowed them to drown out our home grown, homemade, home developed and manufactured goods.
This could be an opportune time to take advantage of a lower priced pound and to look for new and alternative markets of our own. I appreciate some of the imported ingredients will cost more, but are there other ways to do things? Unleash more home made goods or look for new and alternative markets. I don’t want to make light of these changes and certainly no one has ever said this journey would be easy, but it does go to show there are plenty of new opportunities outside of the 27 EU counties and amongst the 196 countries of the world.