10:36 GMT26 February 2021
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    With the UK referendum on whether or not to leave the EU less than a week away, Radio Sputnik asked prominent French economist and financier Charles Gave to share his thoughts about the short- and long-term consequences Brexit could have for Britain and its European neighbors.

    “I think the main consequences will be political. If the British vote to leave the EU it would reflect their rejection of the idea of a pan-European nation the MEPs are forcing on us now. I also believe it would be great if other countries would follow suit  and shake off the diktat of people no one has elected and no one knows,” Charles Gave said.

    When asked about the economic fallout of such a decision, Charles Gave said that as a veteran economist, he couldn’t name a country where freedom from stupid restrictions and regulations hasn’t led to economic growth.

    “That’s why I have no doubts whatsoever that by ridding itself of the economic pressure from Brussels, Britain will economically benefit from Brexit which, in turn, would encourage other countries to follow suit.”

    Speaking about the effect Brexit could have on France, Charles Gave said that he didn’t think so because the French economy already carried the dual burden of European and national administrations.

    “Ninety-five percent of the euro market is now in London. Why? Because they have laws there, they have the courts and procedural mechanisms. And also because their financial market has been around for almost three centuries now and they have a great deal of self-rule.  Unlike in Frankfurt and Paris, where the financial markets are not free.”

    He added that French laws were neither stable nor business-friendly, that’s why many business people were now moving to London to avoid the bureaucratic hassle they have to deal with at home.

    “And this is something they are going to do again and again. Economic growth hinges on free trade which is something we don’t have because the

    EU had turned itself into a customs union, not a free trade zone. The more economic freedom they have in Britain the more Europeans we are going to see moving over there,” Charles Gave emphasized.

    Charles Gave gained international prominence on the strength of his 2001 book titled “Des Lions menés par des ânes” (“Lions Led by Donkeys.”) which contains strong criticism of the euro and its workings.


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