Over the last few days I have seen a number of pieces being posted on the internet about the future of our economy beyond the 31st December and the prospects of trade deals. This image was published just over two years ago in June 2018 by the Government on their website and it showed how at the time our exports and imports had grown between 2017 and 2018. This was of course a reflection on the growth of our economy at that time and things are currently very different. However focusing on 2017-2019 makes more sense than trying to find out what is happening this year due to the impact of COVID-19. The growth amongst EU nations was greater than the non EU nations over the period which is included in this diagram and it was post the referendum. However this image is no longer available on the latest version of the website but the data for the calendar years is available from here and so the exports and imports is easier to find as shown in the table below.
|Year||Imports from EU||Exports to EU|
The total amount of imports for 2019 was £502,075m compared to £487,190m the previous year and the total amount of exports were £372,618m compared to £344,811m and the EU sums are very similar on each of those years so the growth that was taking place across our economy at that time was clearly taking place in other parts of the world. The USA imports grew from £41,937m to £46,448 and our exports to the USA extended from £54,908 to £61,280 so this is clearly a positive direction given that our departure from the EU is intended to increase our trade deals with other nations. What is not clear is how much of a reduction will take place over the next 18 months in our deals with the EU and where if anywhere we can significantly increase our deals. One of the people who posted some items on social media in the last few days included an item from the daily Express which was suggesting that the Canada, Australia and New Zealand (CANZUK) could be our new super power alliance which is an interesting suggestion so I spent a few minutes checking on the economic size of that alliance and certainly if they were to be added to our USA trade deals, assuming that there was no conflict between then together CANZUK and USA would represent 11.9% of our imports and 19.5% of our exports based on the 2019 trades. Clearly it would be a great deal more challenging to add China into the same group but that would increase the overall sums to 21.2% and 26.2%. However we would need to go a long way further forward with these nations if we saw a major drop in the EU deals. One wonders how well Liz Truss and Liam Fox are doing on some of our external settings along with Michael Gove in his oversight of the EU deals?