El Brexit supone costos para el comercio

BRUSELAS – Los partidarios del Brexit (la salida de Gran Bretaña de la Unión Europea) aseguran que su propuesta no supone casi costo alguno y que no afectaría al comercio internacional del Reino Unido. Se equivocan. Cuando el 23 de junio los votantes británicos emitan su opinión en el referendo, deberán reflexionar sobre las consecuencias reales de abandonar la UE y si podrán mantener los beneficios del libre comercio que hoy disfrutan (y dan por sentados).

Empecemos por lo básico. Abandonar la UE implica que el RU dejará de pertenecer a la Unión Aduanera, que es la base del libre comercio a través de las fronteras entre los 28 estados miembros de la UE (y que establece un arancel externo común para el comercio con países ajenos al bloque). También implica abandonar el Mercado Único, base del libre movimiento de bienes y servicios entre los estados miembros de la UE. Por definición, los países ajenos al bloque no pueden participar del Mercado Único.

¿Qué pasaría después? Durante los dos años hasta que la retirada de Gran Bretaña termine de efectivizarse, habrá negociaciones entre el RU y la UE en relación con muchos temas, como soberanía, orden jurídico, inmigración, finanzas y asuntos económicos. Es de suponer que un objetivo fundamental para Gran Bretaña sería negociar una relación comercial tan parecida como sea posible al régimen actual de libre comercio.

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