Young, European and burdened. The disastrous effect of No-Deal exit for young people.

In the days following the 2016 European Union membership referendum, the idea of arranging a second referendum was unthinkable. Remainers accepted the result as they believed the undermining of the democratic process would be severely more dangerous than withdrawing from the EU.

The idea of a no-deal Brexit has been looming since the triggering of Article 50 in 2017, but it was not until postponed Parliament’s vote on her Brexit deal last December that the possibility of a no-deal Brexit has severely increased.

The economic forecast under a no-deal Brexit is bleak. Firstly, a sudden switch to restrictive WTO rules without a transition period would result in increased tariffs and thereby higher prices of products and services. For example, under EU law, car sales are subject to 0% tariffs, whereas, under WTO law, tariffs are set at 10%. In some cases, the rise is much higher – under EU law, beef sales are subject to 0% tariffs which differ staggeringly to the 90% tariff rate set by the WTO.

Many are of the firm belief that we should prevent a no-deal Brexit

Now, many are of the firm belief that we should prevent a no-deal Brexit at all costs – whether that entails accepting May’s deal with the European Union, arranging a people’s vote, or stopping Brexit altogether.

87% of young people who were too young to vote want to remain

Woefully, it is young people that will take on the burden of Brexit the most. According to a poll by Lord Ashcroft, 73% of people under 24 voted to remain in the EU. Further to this, 87% of young people who were too young to vote at the time of the referendum but old enough to vote today want to remain. It is particularly those graduating from university head-first into a market of shrinking job prospects who stand to lose the most. Leading graduate recruiters have already begun rolling back frontiers, and with Brexit uncertainty often cited in audit reports, this comes as no surprise.

The majority of young British citizens do not want to be recluse

As well as work opportunities, educational opportunities – the eligibility for funding through the Erasmus exchange program – which more than 200,000 UK students have participated in since its inception – will be drastically lowered at best, and eliminated at worst.

Fortunately for British citizens, the potential for a no-deal Brexit has been diminished since the backing from MPs on two major amendments. First, an amendment to the Finance Bill (backed by 303 to 296 votes) means that spending on no-deal preparations will require approval from Parliament. The second amendment (backed by 308 to 297 votes) will require May’s government to return to Parliament within three days with an alternative Brexit plan once her negotiated withdrawal deal is, as expected to be, voted against in the coming week, thereby increasing the likelihood of a 2nd referendum.

The majority of young British citizens do not want to be recluse, particularly in a world of increasing interconnectedness. We want to remain linked to opportunities provided across the world, and Europe plays a significant role in that.

Many are not willing to take material damage on an arbitrary perception of sovereignty and will support any viable option in opposition to a no-deal Brexit. This angle is not niche and will camouflage itself through a barrage of articles similarly arguing for common sense, though what should be apparent is not guaranteed and it is therefore imperative that we collectively denounce the most devastating outcome.

Photo Credit via Flickr

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