, 10 tweets, 2 min read Read on Twitter
Very interesting - but will it make a difference? Some reflections on how the US sees #Brexit after a couple of days in Washington D.C. (thread)
1. Generally, lots of confusion: about the process, politics and details of Brexit. No deal a worry for US firms (already in UK) and, interestingly, Americans planning to travel to UK/Europe (media coverage of food shortages and flight disruption).
2. But Trump is simply not interested in the process of leaving the EU - much more about what happens after the UK has left. For him, a hard Brexit presents trade opportunities for the US. Plus, he distrusts the EU.
3. But not all in Washington feel the same: in particular, Congress and Senate are divided. Irish Americans esp concerned abt Irish border. And some are becoming more vocal (Nancy Pelosi recently spoke abt Brexit for example).
4. Lots of confusion over the *kind* of trade deal the UK wants: strong alignment with EU or US? What about data sharing and access for US pharma and food exports? Still many unanswered questions. Chequers did not provide much clarity.
5. Interestingly, like the EU, US concerned the UK lacks negotiating experience to get what it wants.
6. But others suggested US will play hard ball: it knows what it wants for UK-US trade and will not accept any substantial UK revisions. Likely to be a "take it or leave it" situation.
7. Feeling that UK is distracted: Although UK embassy is in regular & v. good contact with US gov, number of UK ministerial visits has fallen sharply (UK ministers now travel to EU). Less bandwidth in UK for non-Brexit issues ("are they serious about having an FTA with us?").
8. Also not clear how UK will position itself after Brexit: on Iran (with US or the EU)? Multilateral system (in particular WTO reform)? China (will UK let Huawei build 5G system) etc. So US, like EU ms, watching UK decisions on global stage.
9. Meanwhile, US explores new links to Europe: Trump close to Polish government and recently hosted Victor Orban. US officials steadily building stronger relations with MS officials "as UK will no longer be in the EU room". END.
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