I had the pleasure of attending an Economics dinner held at the Carlton Club in London this evening. The famous economist Professor Patrick Minford was the guest speaker. Professor Minford gave an interesting and entertaining speech regarding the current state of the UK’s economy and Brexit.
In summary the key points that were presented by Professor Minford included:
- The UK economy is performing surprisingly well, despite the negative propaganda regarding Brexit and leaving the EU. Employment is at an all-time high and revenue is strong.
- GDP growth is often an inaccurate measure of the strength of the economy as figures from the ONS have shown.
- In economic terms the ideal borrowing to GDP ratio is 60%, currently the UK is running at 70% which indicates the strength of the economy.
- Much has been spoken about immigration but the focus should be on unskilled labour immigration not skilled labour immigration. A 10% increase in unskilled labour results in a 2% pay reduction in the unskilled labour sector. This does not occur when there is an increase in skilled labour.
- The current government are putting too much focus on the legal issues of Brexit and not enough focus on the economic issues.
- By departing from the EU it is calculated that the government could implement £60-70 million savings which could be used to improve the country’s competitiveness by reducing corporation tax, increasing entrepreneurial tax relief, introducing business incentives and developing a long term strategy for business and the economy.
- Professor Minford felt that to leave the EU and adopt WTO terms would eliminate a hard Brexit and the Northern Irish border issues.
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