I’ve expressed the view already in this blog that I think a proper separation of the UK and the EU would take longer than two years, just in terms of unravelling forty years of integration. That task can’t be simple. So I’m pre-disposed toward delaying the date that we leave.
But I think that immediately after the referendum, the task of the government was to come up with some kind of “convergence” strategy, tying up loose ends, making new deals with people etc., which meant that we left in an orderly manner. As long as I can see “converging”, then I’m happy to push back the date we leave. I’m happy to see a direction of travel, as long as we keep moving towards the goal.
One thing that has disappointed me since the referendum is that I see very little evidence that loose ends are being tied up. It’s difficult to put into words, how disappointed I am. I’m probably very cynical, but I think that any reported progress has been smoke-and-mirros, titbits to keep the media and the public at bay. There seems to have been very little work gone into this process – for example the ferry fiasco, and yet this guy is still around because he’s a friend/ally of the Prime Minister. Or the number of trade deals we still need to sort. Fair enough, these things take time, to tie up but that’s why the original leaving period should have beeen greater than two years. Doesn’t competence matter? If these guys had been working on one of my projects, I’d have fired them long ago over their lack of progress.