Thursday, 20 October 2011

A Disaster?

I've noted before on this blog about the perils of an 'in or out' referendum. It won't be the foregone conclusion that some expect. Not least because all of the media, with the exception of the Daily Express, all support our continued membership. The discussion will be skewered accordingly.

Much melodramatic language will be used, such as the oft used line that it would be an 'economic disaster' for the UK if we left as most of our trade is with the EU.

The above picture, however, exposes the deception behind that argument. It's a picture of Douglas, the capital of the Isle of Man. Though the Isle of Man is a Crown Dependency, it is largely responsible for its own internal legislation and tax matters. Crucially it is not a member of the EU and it lies outside the European Economic Area as defined by the Lisbon Treaty (Article 355):
this Treaty shall apply to the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man only to the extent necessary to ensure the implementation of the arrangements for those islands set out in the Treaty concerning the accession of new Member States to the European Economic Community and to the European Atomic Energy Community signed on 22 January 1972.
In short, under the UK's accession treaty 1972, the Isle of Man can freely trade goods without non-EU tariffs, but it maintains its own control on virtually everything else.

So the obvious question is, how come a small island in the Irish sea with a population of around 76,500 can happily govern itself whilst successfully trading with the EU whilst not being a member but the UK cannot?

1 comment:

  1. You answered your own question i.e. its "a small island in the Irish sea with a population of around 76,500"