17/11/2017 Daily Politics


17/11/2017

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LineFromTo

Hello, and welcome

to the Daily Politics.

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The Prime Minister is meeting EU

leaders in Sweden today

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as Brexit Secretary David Davis says

it's time for the EU

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to compromise in the Brexit talks.

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But are European leaders in the mood

to give ground?

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Are the Russians coming?

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Or are they already here?

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As new evidence emerges of Kremlin

interference in elections, how

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worried should we be

here in dear old Blighty?

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As the EU signs what

leaders have called

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an "historic" agreement

on defence cooperation,

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are we edging closer

to the much-vaunted EU army?

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And do you know your

quantitative easing

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from your high yield gilts?

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Where are you on the market

equilibrium price index?

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With Philip Hammond due

to give his Budget on Wednesday,

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we'll bust the economic jargon.

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All that in the next hour.

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And with us for the programme today

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is Rachel Sylvester from the Times

and Toby Young from the Spectator.

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They are here to offer informed,

incisive and intelligent analysis.

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Well, just days to go

to the Budget - widely

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seen at Westminster

as a last

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chance not just for

the Chancellor but for Mrs May

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to reboot her government

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and talk about something

other than Brexit.

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Among the likely measures,

we are promised a singificant

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announcment on housing.

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-- significant announcement.

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Indeed Mrs May yesterday said it

remained her personal mission

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to solve the housing crisis.

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The Communities

Secretary Sajid Javid,

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who last month suggested

borrowing £50 billion

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to boost house building,

took on the Nimbys.

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My message to campaigners,

whether they are in the west

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of England area or anywhere else

that are, let's say,

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anti-development, is, really,

think about your children

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and your grandchildren.

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I've found as an MP,

people will come to see me

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and the person that's come

to see me one week will say,

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"The house prices are too expensive,

my granddaughter can't afford

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anything - what's your government

going to do about it?"

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And a few weeks later the same

person is writing to me and saying

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they don't want that development

across the road.

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So we need to get more

people to really think

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about the consequences

of what they're saying.

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Well, big, bold talk on housing but

if we are honest, how many times

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have we heard prime ministers and

others talking about tackling the

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housing crisis? Do you get any

sense, Rachel, that this time is

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going to be different?

Yes, I think

there is a genuine desire in

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government to do something and the

politics of this fascinating. I

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think the Conservatives understand

that they are in devastating

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position with young voters did at

the election, young voters voted in

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droves for Jeremy Corbyn and the

Tories in one recent poll were for %

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in the polls among young voters on

housing and there's a sense that

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they are almost in danger of losing

a generation. David Willetts, the

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former cabinet minister, compared it

to me recently to a film where a

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French farmer plugs up a spring

hoping to improve his own chances

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and ends up destroying his own

livelihood, and the Tories are

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blocking up their source of voters

by preventing young people from

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joining the property owning

democracy.

Toby, that is a high-risk

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strategy and away Sajid Javid was on

the front page saying, come on, you

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oldies, but the oldies are the young

people who vote for the Tories.

I

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think that isn't dramatic of a

broader problem the Tories have

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which is that they want to stimulate

house-building in the budget along

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those lines, 220,000 houses have

been built on last year, the highest

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number since the 2008 credit crunch.

Things are beginning to head in the

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right direction but the difficulty

the Conservative Party is that one

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of the main obstacles to housing

development is the opposition of

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locals who don't want new houses in

their backyard, particularly in the

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green belt and other areas of

metropolitan open land and so forth

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and it doesn't feel like there's

going to be any changes to the

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planning regulations, any major

changes, and Sagittarius Road bar,

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so all he can do, he is reduced to

applying moral pressure.

Isn't the

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danger that he and Mrs May raise

expectations so high in the budget,

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which at the end we could get a mini

announcement, which is good news,

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but it doesn't crack the housing

problem because it is so massive?

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Absolutely and also calm before the

election and to some extent now,

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Theresa May is one of the main

roadblocks to planning laws on the

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green belt. So Sajid Javid has been

pushing for more radical reform and

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I wonder whether an attack on a

selfish baby boomers is actually not

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too disguised appointed dig at Mrs

May who is the most important baby

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boomer and maybe the most

significant NIMBY in the country.

We

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are going to leave it there.

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So, as we move to the sharp end

of the Brexit negotiations and ever

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closer to the December deadline

for deciding whether the EU

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will agree to move

on to trade talks,

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both sides appear to be digging in.

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The EU Council President Donald Tusk

in effect telling Mrs May today

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that it's time she got a move

on and agreed to hand

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over more cash.

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Mrs May has so far agreed to pay

£18 billion - amid signs the EU

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is looking for nearer

to 50 to 60 billion.

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Well, this morning there

was a concerted push back

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by the British side -

with Brexit Secretary David Davis

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telling my colleague

Laura Kuenssberg it was time

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for the EU to compromise more.

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In a negotiation, you want

the other side to compromise.

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I want them to compromise.

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Surprise surprise, nothing comes

for nothing in this world.

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But so far in this

negotiation, we've made quite

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a lot of compromises.

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On the citizens' rights front,

we've made all the running.

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We've made the running in terms

of things like the right to vote,

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where the European Union then

doesn't seem able to agree

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that everybody involved,

the 3 million Europeans in Britain,

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the million Brits abroad,

should be able to vote.

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They can't do that.

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So we have been offering some quite

creative compromises.

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We haven't always got that back.

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Well, at the same time,

also enduring an early-morning

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round of media inquisitions

was the Foreign

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Secretary Boris Johnson.

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He too seemed intent on pointing

the figner of blame at the EU.

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Asked about the vexed

and unresolved issue of the border

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between Northern Ireland

and the Republic,

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Mr Johnson suggested any

breakthrough depended on Brussels

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agreeing to move on to trade talks.

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Nobody wants to see

a return to a hard border.

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Nobody wants to see a hard border.

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We must work on it and we've got

to work on it together and I think

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what I would say to you is that

in order to resolve those issues

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and get it right for our peoples,

it's necessary now to move

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onto the second stage

of the negotiations, which really

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entail so many of the questions that

are bound up with the border issue.

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The Prime Minister, in Gothenburg

for an EU social summit -

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and no, that's not dad dancing

and party frocks, it's all

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about jobs and employment rights -

was rather less forthright

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but nevertheless urged the EU

to respond positively.

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We look forward to the European

Council and we're continuing

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to look through the issues.

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I was clear in my speech in Florence

that we will honour our commitments.

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But, of course, we want to move

forward together, talking

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about the trade issues and trade

partnership for the future.

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I've set out a vision for that

economic partnership.

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I look forward to the European Union

responding positively to that

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so we can move forward together

and ensure that we can get the best

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possible arrangements for the future

that will be good for people

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in the United Kingdom

and across the remaining EU 27.

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So how is this tough talk

from the British Government likely

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to go down with other EU leaders?

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Well, we're joined now

from Gothenberg by our Europe

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correspondent Kevin Connolly.

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Do you get the sense that, as we

approach December, other EU leaders

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are in a mood now to cut Mrs May

some slack?

I think part of what is

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going on on it goes to the heart of

a problem which has been hovering

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over the Brexit process all along,

and that is where the UK tends to

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see this as a negotiation between

equals, a moment of mutual

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opportunity even, if you like,

sometimes, the other EU countries

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see it as a problem of Britain's on

making and they clearly, you

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sometimes get the impression, don't

feel very much impetus to help

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Britain out of a hole which, in

their view, Britain has dogged by

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deciding to leave. So you had all

sort of talk this morning which

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doesn't imply that nothing has been

done, doesn't imply that nothing is

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happening. There is an acceptance

that Britain has moved, but a pretty

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universal sense, Al, that Britain

has to move a bit more and I thought

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the most cutting remark in a sense

came from the generally pretty well

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disposed and support of Irish Prime

Minister Leo Radtke, who said that

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when you look to the whole thing in

the round and considered all of the

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various problems that remain to be

resolved, he sometimes wondered if

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supporters of Brexit had thought

everything through before they

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embarked on the project.

Is there a

possibility that the EU could say no

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in December, we are going to have to

wait until March? We understand they

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are preparing informal grounds for

moving to trade talks, so is the

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reality that despite all the

language, they will in the end move

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on in December?

No, I think a no in

December is a real, looming

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possibility. The signal they are

trying to send is that if the UK

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really wants that move in December,

wants to stop talking about divorce

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issues and start talking about trade

and transition, then the EU's

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position is not changing, it is that

you've got to get those divorce

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issues finalised - saids' writes,

the Irish border and money - before

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you get trade and transition and

what they are trying to say is that

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any attempt to pick them off one by

one in bilateral meetings, any

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attempt to try to meld the two

issues together, future trade for

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example and the Irish border, they

just won't accept. Leo Varadkar was

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saying to me early on that he

thought it might be desirable to

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write that commitment about the

future of a hardboard at in Ireland

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into an agreement and that is

something we've not really heard

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before and would potentially be

problematic and would been there is

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still quite a lot of detail to be

talked about. We started talking

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about progress in December because

there was no progress on October. It

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is not really a deadline in any

meaningful sense and the real

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problem for the UK side is that the

EU would seem much more merit in

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sticking together on this than it

will in trying to engineer a

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compromise.

Thank you. We are joined

by the Conservative MEP David

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Campbell Bannerman. We are going to

have to pay more and probably quite

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a bit more.

Depends on the

commitments. The question is, what

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are we paying for? The EU wants as

much money as possible and are doing

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the same as Switzerland. They are

desperate for cash. But what are we

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paying for?

Lizard is past

commitments for things like

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pensions, programmes we've already

signed up for, and that could go up

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to 50, 60 billion, provided as is

past payments, that is OK?

For

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goodwill reasons, it makes sense to

fund the multi-annual financial

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framework until 2020.

Which we've

already agreed to.

I think that does

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make sense. There will be some

ongoing liabilities, such as

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pensions etc, I understand that, but

you're not talking about 50 or 60

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billion, but a lot smaller.

What are

we talking about?

20, 30, possibly

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but that is three times our net

contributions.

What of the EU say,

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thanks very much but we are not

interested, you've got to increase

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it?

It puts us in no deal and I have

no problem with no deal. Most of the

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world trade are no deal. United

States, China, Japan, India, Russia,

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is EU rules. We would have to

compensate about £5 billion of

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tariffs but the EU will have to find

13 million of tariff compensation.

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Are you unhappy with the direction

of travel in these negotiation is by

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the Brexit secretary? Because we are

getting indications that probably

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more than what you are talking about

will be put on the table and we know

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the European Court of Justice is

continuing to have oversight during

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the transition period, indeed there

will be new rules and judgments we

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will have to accept. There will be a

transitional period, might be two

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years, might be longer. How do you

feel about that approach to

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negotiations?

I think David Davis is

doing a great job.

Even though he

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has conceded all that?

He is

negotiating. The point about the

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ECJ, I did look into this and asked

President Jean-Claude Younger about

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it, and he said, you have to get a

divorce before even going to a new

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relationship. I don't like the ECJ

being subject to it but during the

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transitional period it is the only

way we are going to do it.

How do

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you respond to someone like Jacob

Rees-Mogg, who is clear on this. If

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you are taking laws from Europe you

have not left Europe?

The

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transitional period is less than two

years but what you have to look at,

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and I've looked into this recently,

the EU law states you have to be a

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third country before you can even do

a deal with the EU, so you do need a

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transition. The ECJ has to agree

this deal under EU law. So I'm more

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relaxed about it. I don't like it

but I'm more relaxed about it and I

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think it is the right way to go.

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Toby, I read in one of the papers,

some German businessman who David

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Davis was talking to saying he

expected unconditional surrender

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from Britain. At the end of the day,

aren't we going to have to cough up

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lots of money?

I think we are going

to have to pay many billions if we

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are going to secure a deal. I'm

optimistic of making more

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progress... It looks like there

might be a Cabinet consent for about

0:15:500:15:55

40 billion. Maybe somewhere between

20 and 40. I'm optimistic that there

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will be progress because this baby

from the EU's point of view the

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optimal time to make a deal about

the money. If Theresa May doesn't

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get a deal and it has to be

postponed until March, her political

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position becomes precarious and

there is a risk that she could be

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replaced by someone who is much less

willing to come up with those sort

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of numbers. From their point of

view, this is the prime time to

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strike a deal.

Our one card is cash,

if we play it now when it comes to

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trade talks, we've played our big

card.

I don't think it is our only

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card. We export more to the EU...

Sorry, we import more than we export

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to the EU. I'm optimistic. On the

ECJ point, I think within the

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Cabinet even Michael Gove said he'd

be prepared to accept Britain being

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subject to ECJ rulings during the

transitional period providing it's

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made clear that following exit we

are no longer subject to them. That

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would be difficult with potential

trading partners if they thought we

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would be subject to those

regulations after departure.

The

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Brexiteers seem to be on board about

things a few months ago they would

0:17:270:17:31

have been up in arms about. We see

it on cash, transition, what is

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going on?

The Brexiteer dart are not

united. David Davis said yesterday

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don't put politics above prosperity.

The real politics involved in this

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is the politics of the Tory party.

You have Brexiteers who are willing

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to strike a deal that will lead to a

better result in the end but there

0:17:580:18:03

are some who are absolutely not

willing. Theresa May is having a

0:18:030:18:08

very difficult time striking that

balance.

David Davis in his

0:18:080:18:13

interview this morning said to --

seem to be pointing the finger of

0:18:130:18:25

blame at Europe.

Eight countries in

the EU have 90% of all the trade. A

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lot of the other countries Denmark,

the Dutch, do want a trade deal. I

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think they are getting it. The

Germans are getting nervous,

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industry is getting nervous in

Germany. No deal hurts the EU far

0:18:420:18:48

more than it does is because we are

the second largest importer of goods

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and services in the world after the

United States.

Thank you very much

0:18:520:18:56

indeed.

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Now, are the Russians coming?

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Or, more to the point,

are they already here?

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Earlier this week,

the Prime Minister accused Moscow

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of "planting fake stories" to

"sow discord in the West".

0:19:030:19:06

The Kremlin have denied

all accusations of election meddling

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and cyber-espionage,

but new data this week showed

0:19:090:19:13

Russian Twitter accounts posted more

than 45,000 messages about Brexit

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in 48 hours during

last year's referendum.

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So, should we be worried or is this

all much ado about nothing?

0:19:210:19:24

Here's Ellie.

0:19:240:19:27

So I have a very simple

message for Russia -

0:19:270:19:30

we know what you are doing

and you will not succeed.

0:19:300:19:34

The Prime Minister was talking

about this sort of thing -

0:19:340:19:36

a tweet posted after

the Westminster Bridge

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terror attack.

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The user, who describes themselves

as an American patriot,

0:19:410:19:44

posted an image of a young Muslim

appearing to ignore

0:19:440:19:46

the mayhem behind.

0:19:460:19:48

Although shared thousands

of times, it was a fake

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and the account came from Russia.

0:19:500:19:53

The tweet was by no

means a one off and MPs

0:19:530:19:56

are investigating what they describe

as a widespread problem.

0:19:560:19:59

They've asked the likes of Twitter

and Facebook to give details

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of Russian accounts they suspect

could have been used

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to try to interfere in the EU

referendum and general election.

0:20:060:20:09

We have to recognise

that there are people within Russia

0:20:090:20:12

seeking to use the social media

platforms to not just influence

0:20:120:20:18

the way people think and vote,

but also to divide communities,

0:20:180:20:20

incite racial hatred,

and this is really serious stuff.

0:20:200:20:23

Is it your belief that the Russians

have played any role in British

0:20:230:20:25

elections and referendums?

0:20:250:20:27

This was the Foreign Secretary's

answer a few weeks ago.

0:20:270:20:29

I haven't seen...

0:20:290:20:30

Not a sausage.

0:20:300:20:31

Nyet.

0:20:310:20:32

Nyet.

0:20:320:20:34

Some critics say the Government

needs to take a firmer stand.

0:20:340:20:38

What worries me slightly

is that the Government,

0:20:380:20:41

because it may be reluctant to do

anything that might cast any doubt

0:20:410:20:44

on the legitimacy of the referendum

result or it might feel nervous

0:20:440:20:48

about upsetting or embarrassing

President Trump, when it hopes

0:20:480:20:54

to get this fantasy trade deal

to rescue it from a disastrous

0:20:540:20:56

Brexit, may be pulling its punches

in terms of getting

0:20:560:20:59

to the truth on this.

0:20:590:21:04

Of course, there are plenty who say

the idea it was the Russians

0:21:040:21:07

what won it when it comes to the EU

referendum is ludicrous.

0:21:070:21:10

Have I seen any evidence that Russia

in any way played a significant role

0:21:100:21:13

in the UK referendum?

0:21:130:21:15

The answer is a big no.

0:21:150:21:20

There is a crackpot conspiracy

theory that Brexit and Trump

0:21:200:21:24

could only have happened

because of some extraordinary

0:21:240:21:26

outside external event.

0:21:260:21:28

It couldn't possibly have

been ordinary people

0:21:280:21:30

making their minds up,

rejecting the European Union

0:21:300:21:32

and rejecting the Democrats,

and they're all looking desperately

0:21:320:21:35

for some excuse to

explain what happened.

0:21:350:21:39

Earlier in the week,

the Russian Embassy reacted

0:21:390:21:43

with characteristic wryness

on the internet, with a response

0:21:430:21:46

that said, "It would be most

unfortunate to see British policy

0:21:460:21:48

towards Russia informed

by wrong intelligence,

0:21:480:21:50

as it was the case in the Iraq war."

0:21:500:21:55

It goes on, "Accusations

have the fundamental flaw of being

0:21:550:21:57

non-transparent and biased."

0:21:570:22:01

But there's little doubt

the suspicion is there and experts

0:22:010:22:03

have singled out Russia.

0:22:030:22:08

There are some very active countries

involved in cyber attacks,

0:22:080:22:10

including China, including

North Korea, including

0:22:100:22:12

Iran, for instance.

0:22:120:22:15

I think what distinguishes Russia,

maybe, from those other three,

0:22:150:22:18

is that Russia is deliberately

trying to undermine our democratic

0:22:180:22:24

system and our institutions,

whereas the others are perhaps not,

0:22:240:22:27

they're trying to steal secrets

maybe, industrial secrets

0:22:270:22:29

or government secrets.

0:22:290:22:32

Our security services, then,

have Russia in their sights.

0:22:320:22:35

If you thought the Cold War

was over, well, it looks

0:22:350:22:38

like it just went cyber.

0:22:380:22:41

Jamie Bartlett is the is director

of the Centre for the Analysis

0:22:410:22:51

of Social Media.

0:22:510:22:59

Is this a crackpot theory or is it

pretty serious?

I think its crackpot

0:22:590:23:04

to say it was Russian patrols and

box that swung either the American

0:23:040:23:11

election or the Brexit referendum

and there are critics of those

0:23:110:23:14

decisions who find it easier to

blame this on outside influence but

0:23:140:23:18

that is slightly different from what

is increasingly clear that people

0:23:180:23:23

involved with the Kremlin, or the

Kremlin itself, or the Internet

0:23:230:23:28

research agency, a Kremlin backed

body did indeed have both automated

0:23:280:23:35

bots and paid operatives who were

posting content about Brexit likely

0:23:350:23:42

in the interest of people voting for

Brexit or more generally to so

0:23:420:23:50

discard, disharmony and confusion.

Is this marginal tweets from Russian

0:23:500:23:56

bloggers sponsored by the Kremlin or

are we talking about something much

0:23:560:24:02

more significant, coordinated,

designed to promote Russian policy

0:24:020:24:07

objectives.

Somewhere between the

two. In the case of the research

0:24:070:24:11

released in the last week or two by

Swansea University, something like

0:24:110:24:17

150,000 accounts that they believe

were Russian controlled bots or

0:24:170:24:22

operatives. Other research has

placed it a little bit lower than

0:24:220:24:25

that. It's a decent number. Those

researchers found that it was

0:24:250:24:30

something like 20% of all tweets

that were on the hashtag Brexit were

0:24:300:24:35

on these accounts. So it was a

significant volume. Most people tend

0:24:350:24:40

to believe that this was a warm up

act for the American election where

0:24:400:24:44

there was a lot more of a concerted

effort to use these techniques to

0:24:440:24:50

try to influence that election. You

got to remember that this is very

0:24:500:24:53

cheap and easy to do. It's not hard

or complicated. You can have a room

0:24:530:24:59

full of a few dozen people who are

able to, using bots, put out

0:24:590:25:05

incredible volumes of stories and

content.

Is there anything anyone

0:25:050:25:09

can do about it?

Generally speaking,

we have created an international

0:25:090:25:16

communications network that is

without Borders. It is not going to

0:25:160:25:21

go away and can be very easily

manipulated by people from all

0:25:210:25:24

around the world.

What about the

social media companies? Can they say

0:25:240:25:31

this is suspicious, this is run from

St Petersburg...

There are something

0:25:310:25:36

social media companies can do to

identify certain IP addresses, for

0:25:360:25:41

example, that are associated with

particular agencies and share it

0:25:410:25:44

with the government but in the end

you can use all sorts of clever

0:25:440:25:49

spoof addresses and...

Do we do it?

I don't know if our government does

0:25:490:25:56

anything of this sort but it is

pretty easy to do. Ordinary Russian

0:25:560:26:01

citizens without backing of the

Kremlin can get involved in talking

0:26:010:26:04

about our politics as well and there

is nothing to stop that.

Rachel,

0:26:040:26:11

conspiracy war or serious trouble?

I

think it's fascinating to think that

0:26:110:26:17

the Kremlin has common goals with

Brexit. To think this is a

0:26:170:26:24

revolutionary act. The Kremlin wants

to destabilise western institutions,

0:26:240:26:29

it would like nothing better than to

see the collapse of the EU. While I

0:26:290:26:33

think it is a mistake to say somehow

Rasha stole the Brexit result, there

0:26:330:26:39

is an unsettling common cause in

that. Michael Gove talks about being

0:26:390:26:45

in favour of creative destruction

but the Russians just want the

0:26:450:26:48

destructive side of that. There is

the destructive side of Brexit which

0:26:480:26:53

is incredibly appealing to that.

These academics at Swansea found

0:26:530:26:59

some pro-remain tweets that they

attributed to Russia and bots as

0:26:590:27:04

well. I think it is an attempt by

remain as to delegitimise those who

0:27:040:27:09

voted to leave. If they were these

credulous idiots whose vote could be

0:27:090:27:15

purchased by a Russian bot, why

couldn't they have been purchased by

0:27:150:27:18

the extraordinary resources of the

remain campaign who had the backing

0:27:180:27:24

of all the institutions? If they

were as uninformed as easily

0:27:240:27:30

manipulated as these theorists had

it, why didn't they vote for remain?

0:27:300:27:36

Is their analysis to suggest

regardless of how many social media

0:27:360:27:42

postings there are, it has any

impact?

This has been a big question

0:27:420:27:47

for a long time, the extent to which

the stuff people read online has

0:27:470:27:55

influenced the way they vote. We

don't know exactly. There is no

0:27:550:28:01

evidence to suggest it has

decisively swung even one person's

0:28:010:28:04

vote. But this is not necessarily

the purpose. It is to soak

0:28:040:28:10

disharmony, confusion and

frustration. Yes, they weren't

0:28:100:28:15

posting remain stuff as well. Not as

much. But it is often very divisive

0:28:150:28:20

content. We have an increasingly

divisive politics wherever one is

0:28:200:28:23

furious at each other and in that

this can make a difference.

Have the

0:28:230:28:30

Russians realise the potential of

using Twitter and Facebook to spread

0:28:300:28:37

propaganda on the dirt cheap?

Absolutely not. China employs

0:28:370:28:45

thousands of people to post

pro-China stuff. The Mexican

0:28:450:28:52

government is doing it. Governments

have realised that social media is

0:28:520:28:57

an important fulcrum and can be

manipulated one way or the other.

0:28:570:29:02

It's obvious that it isn't

incredibly difficult to do. The

0:29:020:29:06

Russians have a head start but

everyone is catching up quickly.

Do

0:29:060:29:11

you think Vladimir Putin uses

twitter?

I don't think so.

We will

0:29:110:29:17

leave it there.

0:29:170:29:19

Now, the Environment Secretary,

Michael Gove, has apparently been

0:29:190:29:26

using lots of "long,

economic words" and

0:29:260:29:33

mentioning obscure financial

terms during Cabinet.

0:29:330:29:35

Might he be trying to show how well

suited he is to replacing

0:29:350:29:38

Philip Hammond as Chancellor?

0:29:380:29:39

Perish the thought.

0:29:390:29:46

Politicians have always used words

to show. Listen to Lord Heseltine

0:29:460:29:49

using economic jargon and having a

dig at Ed Balls in the process.

0:29:490:30:02

Here the game. Our new economic

approach is rooted in ideas stress

0:30:020:30:05

the importance of macroeconomics,

neoclassical endogenous growth

0:30:050:30:14

theory and the same biotic

relationships between growth and

0:30:140:30:17

investment in people and

infrastructure. Clear,

0:30:170:30:25

unambiguous... There you have it.

The final proof, Labour's brand-new

0:30:250:30:32

shining modernist economic dream but

it wasn't Brown's, it was balls.

0:30:320:30:42

Well, we are a public service

broadcaster so we thought we would

0:30:420:30:45

do a better jargon busting for any

Cabinet ministers are feeling a bit

0:30:450:30:50

out of the loop. To help us, we're

joined by the financial writer

0:30:500:30:54

Louise Cooper. Let's start with

politicians and jargon - are they

0:30:540:30:58

particularly prone to use economic

jargon because they are actually

0:30:580:31:01

skating on very thin ice and really

most of them are bluffing and don't

0:31:010:31:04

know the economic details?

SIMM

biosis is actually a biological term

0:31:040:31:09

but we don't generally use it. From

my experience, I am always quite

0:31:090:31:16

aghast at how little politicians do

understand about many aspects,

0:31:160:31:22

particularly finance. Economics,

some of them over a background but

0:31:220:31:28

particularly financial markets,

there is an extraordinary lack of

0:31:280:31:30

knowledge.

Why use those terms? The

danger is you are showing up to be

0:31:300:31:35

frankly a bluffer

To be fair, the

financial industry uses an awful lot

0:31:350:31:43

of Cobbler gated jargon to charge

very high prices so everybody is

0:31:430:31:49

guilty of using jargon. --

complicated jargon. Can I point out

0:31:490:31:53

that in your opening line you taught

about high yield gilts, high yield

0:31:530:31:57

gilts is an oxymoron. Sorry about

that but you are guilty.

We are

0:31:570:32:08

going to see how you do with some

other phrases which people might

0:32:080:32:13

have difficulty with, so have a look

at this one. I am going to ask our

0:32:130:32:18

guests. This is the Gove utterance

at Cabinet as he was trying to

0:32:180:32:23

showboat on his potential as a

Chancellor. Toby, you might get this

0:32:230:32:27

but let's have a go, markets and

financial instruments directive. Any

0:32:270:32:32

thoughts on where we are going with

this?

Is it to do with things like

0:32:320:32:38

taking options?

It is actually MFR

IDE one, MS D2 came out in 2007. It

0:32:380:32:53

comes in on January three, the

entire financial world is obsessed

0:32:530:32:56

with it because it is enormous

regulation as a result of the

0:32:560:32:59

financial crisis. The idea is

increased transparency and greater

0:32:590:33:05

protection for investors. The

extraordinary thing about MFID two

0:33:050:33:09

is that it is so all-encompassing

that it gets right down into the

0:33:090:33:12

detail as to how things are traded.

We have overdosed on MFID! Let's try

0:33:120:33:19

this one... Rachel, I think you

might... What about this? We have

0:33:190:33:24

already had a nudge at gilts and

yields.

We were told we were wrong.

0:33:240:33:29

I was told that was some sort of

borrowing. Is that the right

0:33:290:33:35

ballpark? Gilts are gilt-edged

securities, government debt,

0:33:350:33:41

government debt is. They issue it by

the debt management office and the

0:33:410:33:44

yield is the interest rate, the

borrowing cost, and currently, shall

0:33:440:33:47

I just throw it out there? What is

the 10-year borrowing cost? What

0:33:470:33:52

does it cost the Government to

borrow for ten years at the moment?

0:33:520:33:54

Anyone want to guess?

No idea. This

one, we will hear plenty of it from

0:33:540:34:04

the Chancellor, Toby, I expect you

to back this out of the park, it is

0:34:040:34:08

too easy. Productivity.

That is the

amount of product produced by a unit

0:34:080:34:15

of labour.

Surely that is right?

Spot on for productivity, dubbed the

0:34:150:34:19

economic problem of our age by

research analysts today but frankly

0:34:190:34:24

I think we have an awful lot of

economic problems of our age.

I have

0:34:240:34:28

my own guide to jargon busting, just

confidently, brook no questions and

0:34:280:34:35

plough on regardless. Thank you very

much.

0:34:350:34:42

For the next half an hour we're

going to be focusing on Europe.

0:34:420:34:45

We'll be discussing EU plans to beef

up defence cooperation,

0:34:450:34:47

Polish anger at the threat of EU

sanctions and whether Brussels can

0:34:470:34:50

do anything about tax havens.

0:34:500:34:51

First, though, here's our guide

to the latest from Europe

0:34:510:34:54

in just 60 seconds.

0:34:540:34:55

As the great philosopher David

Hasselhoff once sang, "I've been

0:34:570:35:00

looking for freedom,

still it can't be found."

0:35:000:35:03

And there was similar

frustration for the German

0:35:030:35:05

Chancellor as talks to form

a workable government coalition

0:35:050:35:07

rumbled on.

0:35:070:35:12

She missed a self-imposed deadline

today.

0:35:120:35:16

The European Parliament

0:35:160:35:17

named its press room in Strasbourg

0:35:170:35:18

after Daphne Caruana Galizia,

the Maltese journalist killed last

0:35:180:35:20

month after reporting

allegations of corruption.

0:35:200:35:27

Have reports of a Brexit exodus been

exaggerated? The latest figures from

0:35:270:35:30

the offers of national statistics

show the number of EU nationals

0:35:300:35:34

working in the UK continues to rise.

0:35:340:35:38

They say a cold shower

is character building.

0:35:380:35:40

It's not something

MEPs are keen to try.

0:35:400:35:42

There was uproar this week

after it was announced the hot water

0:35:420:35:45

in their offices would be

permanently switched off because of

0:35:450:35:47

health concerns.

0:35:470:35:48

Where did you get

that hat, Mr Juncker?

0:35:480:35:50

The answer, a number

of academic institutions

0:35:500:35:52

where the EU president has received

honorary degrees in recent months.

0:35:520:36:02

Let's pick up on that element about

the ONS figures.

0:36:080:36:11

Is talk of a Brexodus -

ie EU nationals fleeing

0:36:110:36:13

the UK after Brexit - a myth?

0:36:130:36:15

Well, figures releasd by the ONS

suggest that the number of EU

0:36:150:36:18

nationals working in the UK has

actually reached a record high

0:36:180:36:20

of 2.37 million migrants.

0:36:200:36:25

What do you make of this, Rachel? I

am confused. I thought other figures

0:36:250:36:31

from the ONS showed a dramatic

slowdown in the number of EU

0:36:310:36:34

nationals coming here post Brexit.

The problem is, we need a lot of EU

0:36:340:36:39

nationals working in the economy,

particularly in low skilled jobs,

0:36:390:36:43

and I think there is a real danger

of expectations not being met.

0:36:430:36:46

People voted for Brexit because they

were cross of bout low skilled

0:36:460:36:51

immigration but I think a lot of it

is going to continue after Brexit

0:36:510:36:56

and the government will need a lot

of it to continue because business

0:36:560:36:59

and farmers will demand and

inevitably, the economy will mean it

0:36:590:37:02

carries on.

Does that mean, Toby,

that despite these figures there are

0:37:020:37:07

real problems around the corner in

terms of EU migrants coming home?

0:37:070:37:13

That is often the move made by

Remainers who predicted that merely

0:37:130:37:17

by voting to leave we would trigger

this mass Brexodus and, as it turns

0:37:170:37:23

out, it hasn't happened. As you say,

there was a record number of EU

0:37:230:37:26

nationals currently working in the

UK, over 100,000 more than there

0:37:260:37:29

were this time last year, including

more in the NHS, so they moved to

0:37:290:37:35

say, yes, it hasn't happened yet

because we have left yet but it

0:37:350:37:38

might happen when we leave.

One

thing we do learn is that the people

0:37:380:37:43

coming now, the biggest increase is

in Bulgarians and Romanians, which

0:37:430:37:47

rather suggests as low skilled and

may be doctors and professionals are

0:37:470:37:55

thinking, I don't think so.

There

are more working as doctors here

0:37:550:38:03

than there were in June 2016. The

way in which remain usually present

0:38:030:38:06

their case is the numbers leaving

without the numbers of people

0:38:060:38:11

arriving being taken into account it

took Boris calculating the 350

0:38:110:38:17

million a week figure, that wasn't a

net figure but was just about

0:38:170:38:20

outflows are not in close. If you

include outflows, net there are more

0:38:200:38:25

EU nationals working here than ever

before.

Rachel, a Ramona sleight of

0:38:250:38:28

hand?

The issue is that the people

who voted for Brexit are going to be

0:38:280:38:35

furious because they feel they voted

to bring down immigration and will

0:38:350:38:39

feel betrayed by the Brexiteers who

promised that.

But isn't there

0:38:390:38:48

upward pressure on wages?

Didn't

they vote on what they perceived to

0:38:480:38:52

be too many people coming, even

though they are needed?

0:38:520:39:03

This week was described

as "historic" by one EU

0:39:030:39:05

foreign policy chief as the EU moved

closer to deeper defence integration

0:39:050:39:08

between member states.

0:39:080:39:09

The Permanent Structured

Co-operation Pact,

0:39:090:39:12

or Pesco for short, should come

into force next month.

0:39:120:39:17

23 countries have declared

they'll take part so far -

0:39:170:39:19

with Portugal and the Irish Republic

eventually expected to also sign on.

0:39:190:39:24

Only Denmark, Malta, and -

of course - the UK will

0:39:240:39:27

remain unaffiliated.

0:39:270:39:31

The pact was originally proposed

by France and Germany,

0:39:310:39:34

keen to bolster the EU

after the Brexit vote.

0:39:340:39:39

The agreement requires

countries to increase defence

0:39:390:39:41

budgets in real terms,

0:39:410:39:46

and also tasks them with providing

"substantial support" -

0:39:460:39:48

including personnel -

for EU military missions.

0:39:480:39:53

Nevertheless it falls short

of the full EU army Commission

0:39:530:39:56

President Jean-Claude Juncker

envisioned in his State of the Union

0:39:560:39:59

address this year.

0:39:590:40:04

Estonian Defense Minister Juri Luik

said even with Pesco in force,

0:40:040:40:06

"collective defence will

always remain in Nato."

0:40:060:40:11

Despite traditional British

scepticism about further

0:40:110:40:12

integration, Boris Johnson

has welcomed the move

0:40:120:40:17

and said the UK was supportive,

and would be "like a flying buttress

0:40:170:40:21

to support the cathedral".

0:40:210:40:24

Well, to discuss this

here in the studio

0:40:240:40:26

we have the new Ukip leader,

Henry Bolton, and in Cambridge

0:40:260:40:29

is the Labour MEP, Alex Mayer.

0:40:290:40:37

Alex, if I can start with you first,

Labour government as well as

0:40:370:40:42

Conservative governments have always

been very iffy about Europe getting

0:40:420:40:45

its act together on defence and

basically, we've been accused of

0:40:450:40:49

blocking it. Is Labour now in favour

of closer EU defence cooperation?

0:40:490:40:58

Yes, we are and I think that what

has happened over the last few

0:40:580:41:01

months and years is that the whole

geopolitical situation has changed.

0:41:010:41:09

When I took particularly to my

Eastern European colleagues in the

0:41:090:41:13

European Parliament, they are

particularly worried about Russian

0:41:130:41:15

aggression and want to make sure

that European defence is

0:41:150:41:19

strengthened and I believe that

working together will enable us to

0:41:190:41:22

do that.

Surely that is a good

thing, Henry Bolton, if the EU

0:41:220:41:27

begins to look after itself rather

than having to rely on others, above

0:41:270:41:31

all the Americans?

There are two

aspects that maybe I can start by

0:41:310:41:35

saying that although we didn't sign

up to Pesco on Monday, it is quite

0:41:350:41:43

clear that we are going to be

participating in principle in other

0:41:430:41:45

areas of this, such as the European

defence fund and various other

0:41:450:41:53

mechanisms that government secures.

Those in turn are going to be

0:41:530:41:57

governed by Brussels-based political

and regulatory decision-making that

0:41:570:42:00

we won't be fully participating in

post Brexit, so we will be

0:42:000:42:05

subordinating elements of our

military-industrial and scientific

0:42:050:42:09

and research, as well as our

military, to EU policy.

Given the

0:42:090:42:15

threat we now seem to be facing from

Russia, you think of Crimea and the

0:42:150:42:19

Ukraine, surely it makes sense for

the UK to start putting more oomph

0:42:190:42:23

behind its military capability?

Cooperation and EU member states

0:42:230:42:29

co-operating and ensuring their

command and control can work

0:42:290:42:32

together so they are compatible with

each other, yes, but centralised

0:42:320:42:35

political direction, policy and

regulatory frameworks is not the way

0:42:350:42:41

to go. Nato is the alliance that has

kept the peace up until now.

Ian

0:42:410:42:49

Stannard burgers entirely OK with

this development.

Well, I am not and

0:42:490:42:55

Ukip is not. We have seen a whole

range of areas where it implies

0:42:550:42:59

deeper political integration with

the EU, when we have compromised on

0:42:590:43:11

our ability to deploy capability

unilaterally, the problem here is

0:43:110:43:14

that Nato has managed to survive and

work effectively as a military

0:43:140:43:20

deterrent for decades without that

regulatory framework.

Alex, isn't

0:43:200:43:24

the real danger of this that it is a

paper tiger. At the end of the day

0:43:240:43:29

there is a lot of talk about Europe

getting its military act together

0:43:290:43:33

but basically, it is a sort of

bureaucratic getting your act

0:43:330:43:36

together, rather than real tanks on

the ground?

I just think this is

0:43:360:43:40

being blown out of all proportion.

This is a Ukip storm in a teacup. It

0:43:400:43:46

is good news if European countries

wish to cooperate with each other on

0:43:460:43:50

defence. Nobody is forcing anybody

to be a part of it, as we heard

0:43:500:43:56

early introduction to this reporter

Doug Britain is not part of it,

0:43:560:43:59

Malta is not part of it. You can

choose whether you want to so what

0:43:590:44:03

is wrong with EU countries choosing

to work together on defence, just as

0:44:030:44:07

we choose to work together in the UN

or in Nato? And as you rightly said,

0:44:070:44:12

the Secretary General of Nato has

welcomed this move. We don't want to

0:44:120:44:16

do anything to duplicate Nato but

European countries choosing work

0:44:160:44:19

together I think is a good thing and

will help strengthen our defence.

0:44:190:44:23

Where is your leader on this, Jeremy

Corbyn? He is generally iffy about

0:44:230:44:29

Nato.

He is in favour of making sure

people collaborate with each other

0:44:290:44:33

and making sure we have successful

mission is to try and keep a more

0:44:330:44:37

peaceful and stable world.

0:44:370:44:43

Donald Trump has always argued that

Europe cannot keep relying on the

0:44:430:44:48

Americans. Surely this is just a

natural political development that

0:44:480:44:51

at the end of the day Europe is

going to have to turn its attention

0:44:510:44:55

to defence.

His concern is the

amount people are spending on

0:44:550:45:00

defence. The problem with the whole

Pesco concept is that member states

0:45:000:45:05

will not to any great extent, we

cannot expect them to increase their

0:45:050:45:09

military expenditure. The deal for

Nato is 2% and they don't maintain

0:45:090:45:16

that. They are not going to increase

national capabilities to support

0:45:160:45:22

Pesco. They are going to pool assets

and save costs. This is one of the

0:45:220:45:28

things driving it. What concerns me

is at the moment member states who

0:45:280:45:33

are members of Nato pledge military

assets and capability to Nato. They

0:45:330:45:37

are going to be pledging those to

the European Union and you can't do

0:45:370:45:41

both.

Toby, how do you read this? A

serious move for Europe to get its

0:45:410:45:48

act together on defence or just

talk?

It seems like some of the

0:45:480:45:53

ground clearance they need to do in

order to create an EU wide army.

Is

0:45:530:45:58

that a good thing?

It was one of the

things that the leave aside flagged

0:45:580:46:04

up as a risk and it was always

dismissed by remain as as in the

0:46:040:46:09

same category fake news Turkey

joining. The differences, if we

0:46:090:46:19

remain in the EU and an EU army gets

created, it's not clear that we

0:46:190:46:23

would have a choice if our troops

were called up to fight in an EU

0:46:230:46:27

war. In Nato, we have a right of

veto. Every Nato country has to

0:46:270:46:34

endorse military action before

deploying troops.

One aspect of

0:46:340:46:41

Brexit, with France we are the big

player in European defence. Now we

0:46:410:46:46

are out, is that what has driven the

Europeans to get their act together?

0:46:460:46:52

Yes, exactly. Britain has been a

block on further integration. If it

0:46:520:46:56

leaves, the rest of the EU is going

to more and more gather together. I

0:46:560:47:03

don't see we can complain about

that. If we choose to leave, that's

0:47:030:47:06

their right to do so.

Brexit has led

to this?

Brexit has taken away and

0:47:060:47:16

-- an obstacle to achieving it. Full

European Union, military union is

0:47:160:47:23

the direction of travel. It's

absolutely where we are going.

Is

0:47:230:47:29

that where you would like Europe to

go?

I don't think there is likely to

0:47:290:47:36

be a European army. I don't think

that is the end goal and I don't

0:47:360:47:40

think anyone is going to be forced

into it. This is a union of

0:47:400:47:44

countries of Europe who want to get

together and share ideas and

0:47:440:47:49

resources on defence and that's what

happening. No troops are going to be

0:47:490:47:52

called up from different countries

without their say-so. This is just

0:47:520:47:57

people collaborating together to get

the best from the resources that

0:47:570:48:00

they have.

Henry, a voluntary

arrangement that people can take or

0:48:000:48:07

leave?

That is what Nato is and this

is not. This will be regulated, as

0:48:070:48:13

the government made clear in their

paper of September, regulated by the

0:48:130:48:17

European Union and we won't be part

of that. I would agree with Boris

0:48:170:48:23

Johnson's analogy about a flying

buttress to an extent, but a

0:48:230:48:28

buttress supports from the outside.

If we maintain our full military

0:48:280:48:33

capabilities we will always want to

support our allies abroad. Including

0:48:330:48:37

in the EU. Ukip doesn't believe that

we need to be subordinate to EU

0:48:370:48:43

decision-making either within the

community or politically. We are far

0:48:430:48:47

better able to do that if we are

outside the building but supporting

0:48:470:48:51

it.

Thanks very much.

0:48:510:48:56

Now, could we soon see

the EU impose sanctions

0:48:560:48:59

on one of its own member states?

0:48:590:49:02

MEPs voted this week to start

official proceedings against Poland

0:49:020:49:07

over concerns that the nationalist

government in Warsaw

0:49:070:49:09

is clamping down on

the independence of the judiciary.

0:49:090:49:15

In a resolution adopted

by 438 votes to 152,

0:49:150:49:18

the European Parliament voted

to launch the so-called

0:49:180:49:20

Article 7 process which could lead

to the suspension of Poland's voting

0:49:200:49:24

rights in the council of the EU.

0:49:240:49:28

In a debate in Strasbourg,

MEPs said the country had conducted

0:49:280:49:33

"serious violations" of the rule

of law - but the vote didn't go down

0:49:330:49:37

very well with one Polish MEP.

0:49:370:49:42

Why you are leaving?

0:49:420:49:44

No, because I have to

say something to you.

0:49:440:49:47

I have to say something to you.

0:49:470:49:52

Your attack on Mr Lewandowski,

I find it outrageous.

0:49:520:49:55

If there is one sensible...

0:49:550:49:57

APPLAUSE

0:49:570:50:00

If there is one sensible,

reasonable colleague of us,

0:50:000:50:05

sometimes even a little bit boring,

then it is Mr Lewandowski and to say

0:50:050:50:10

that he is losing his senses, well,

I think it's the Polish government

0:50:100:50:13

that has lost its senses

and not Mr Lewandowski.

0:50:130:50:19

It's interesting. There is a tension

it seems between the old Western

0:50:190:50:27

European countries and the new

Eastern European countries and this

0:50:270:50:30

symbolises it, doesn't it?

Exactly.

The EU has to uphold the rule of

0:50:300:50:37

law, Red Bull democracy...

Sanctions

is a big step. -- liberal democracy.

0:50:370:50:45

This is a big step. I think

ultimately the house to uphold those

0:50:450:50:53

values that it stands for.

Toby, the

counterargument is that the polls

0:50:530:51:00

say they are a democratically

elected government and what they

0:51:000:51:03

choose to do with their country is

none of their business. Leave them

0:51:030:51:06

alone.

For someone on my side of the

Brexit debate who believes in the

0:51:060:51:12

rule of law and in universal human

rights but also believes in national

0:51:120:51:18

self-determination, this is a tricky

one. PE would have more credibility

0:51:180:51:22

as appalled as of the rule of law

and universal human rights if they

0:51:220:51:27

hadn't supported the Spanish

government in their brutal crackdown

0:51:270:51:31

for the independence movement in

Catalonia.

Is it possible that down

0:51:310:51:38

the line we could see Eastern

European countries looking to

0:51:380:51:42

Britain and thinking, I think we

want out of this club?

Or becoming a

0:51:420:51:47

block within the block perhaps?

There is definitely a different

0:51:470:51:52

culture. That Franco German axis of

closer integration, EU, the faith,

0:51:520:51:59

the true faith. Definitely driven

from that side of it. You could

0:51:590:52:06

easily see a different culture and

the block within a blog developing.

0:52:060:52:12

It seems interesting that much of

the argument around Brexit is that

0:52:120:52:15

we are going to teach the Brits a

lesson so no one upstairs do it. But

0:52:150:52:20

there hasn't really been any sign of

anyone else looking to exit.

I

0:52:200:52:28

always thought that was a slight red

Herring on the part of the EU. One

0:52:280:52:32

of the reasons I'm optimistic that

there will be movement in December

0:52:320:52:40

is because if we are actually forced

by the EU through intransigence to

0:52:400:52:44

crash out without a deal and end of

trading with the rest of Europe via

0:52:440:52:49

WTO rules and we make a success of

that, then there might be a stampede

0:52:490:52:53

for the exit.

0:52:530:52:56

Earlier this week European

Parliament called an urgent debate

0:52:560:52:59

on the so-called Paradise Papers -

a leak of 13 million documents,

0:52:590:53:02

reportedly tying major companies

and political figures to secretive

0:53:020:53:05

overseas financial arrangements.

0:53:050:53:08

MEPs called for a step up

in the fight against tax evasion -

0:53:080:53:18

-- avoidance.

0:53:220:53:24

Adam Fleming has the details.

0:53:240:53:28

Papers, papers everywhere.

0:53:280:53:29

But the documents MEPs cared

about this week were ones that

0:53:290:53:31

revealed how the rich pay less tax.

0:53:310:53:33

The so-called Paradise Papers.

0:53:330:53:34

TRANSLATION:

When I consider

that this cup of tea,

0:53:340:53:36

when I bought it, I paid more tax

than an international sporting

0:53:360:53:39

company pays its entire turnover.

0:53:390:53:40

Then it's really outrageous.

0:53:400:53:42

It's not just an individual case.

0:53:420:53:43

From the Queen to Facebook,

from George Soros to Uber,

0:53:430:53:46

from Shakira to eBay,

all of them are mentioned

0:53:460:53:48

in the Paradise Papers.

0:53:480:53:52

More than 60 billion euros a year

are being lost to the EU.

0:53:520:53:58

The leader of the centre-left group

called tax avoidance a "cancer"

0:53:580:54:01

on the European economy.

0:54:010:54:03

TRANSLATION:

States are imposing

austerity whilst, at the same time,

0:54:030:54:06

multinationals are taking billions

out of the economy and

0:54:060:54:12

not paying tax, thereby depriving

people of this income.

0:54:120:54:16

And we have drawn attention to this

repeatedly, as socialists.

0:54:160:54:21

The Paradise Papers

originated here, Bermuda,

0:54:210:54:26

a British Overseas Territory,

thrusting the UK into the spotlight.

0:54:260:54:30

Another day, another leak

of embarrassing documents

0:54:300:54:32

about the role of the City of London

as the global centre

0:54:320:54:35

for tax avoidance.

0:54:350:54:38

Successive British governments

have postured about leading

0:54:380:54:41

on transparency but it's easy

to play the good guy when you have

0:54:410:54:44

so many post-colonial territories

to do the dirty work

0:54:440:54:46

at your bidding.

0:54:460:54:49

Avoiding civilised rules on tax

was always part of the Brexit agenda

0:54:490:54:52

but any attempt to turn Britain

into the Bermuda of the North

0:54:520:54:56

is likely to flounder since the EU

will surely make cleaning up

0:54:560:55:00

the overseas territories a condition

for any future trade deal.

0:55:000:55:05

But the rest of

the EU got the blame, as well.

0:55:050:55:09

Remember, it was an EU directive

in the 1980s that let multinational

0:55:090:55:13

companies pay tax in any

European headquarters country,

0:55:130:55:17

rather than where revenues

and profits were really made.

0:55:170:55:21

Remember, tougher action has been

taking against the Lux Leaks

0:55:210:55:24

whistle-blowers

than against the accountants,

0:55:240:55:26

corporate executives,

or politicians involved.

0:55:260:55:29

Remember that the commission's

own president Mr Juncker

0:55:290:55:32

was Prime Minister of Luxembourg

when his country was conniving

0:55:320:55:36

with big accountancy firms

to erode the tax bases

0:55:360:55:39

of larger EU economies.

0:55:390:55:43

Jean-Claude Juncker and his

commissioners decamped to Strasbourg

0:55:430:55:46

as usual and have their weekly

meeting in this very room.

0:55:460:55:49

And they say they are

gripping this issue.

0:55:490:55:51

For example, they want every company

to publish every activity

0:55:510:55:54

it does in every country,

so they can be taxed properly.

0:55:540:55:57

And they want to publish a blacklist

of global tax havens

0:55:570:56:00

at the start of next month.

0:56:000:56:05

But some MEPs say the hold-up

comes from the member states.

0:56:050:56:07

Which countries are blocking it?

0:56:070:56:08

Oh, so many.

0:56:080:56:11

Of course, you have

the inner European tax paradises,

0:56:110:56:16

like the Benelux countries,

Ireland, Malta, Cyprus.

0:56:160:56:19

But, then, surprisingly,

you have a number of big

0:56:190:56:21

countries and, of course,

I forgot to mention

0:56:210:56:24

the United Kingdom,

all these Crown dependencies,

0:56:240:56:26

but then you have big

countries like Germany.

0:56:260:56:28

Wolfgang Schauble,

when he was finance minister

0:56:280:56:32

not long ago, was the key opponent

to public country-by-country

0:56:320:56:35

reporting for multinationals

because he wants to preserve

0:56:350:56:38

the reputation of the big

German multinationals.

0:56:380:56:43

So, there is no holy

finance ministers there.

0:56:430:56:46

And this week, the Parliament,

Council and commission

0:56:460:56:48

failed to agree

a new law on money-laundering

0:56:480:56:50

after eight attempts.

0:56:500:56:55

Looks like the murky

world of tax avoidance

0:56:550:56:59

will stay murky for a while.

0:56:590:57:05

I have a slight sense of deja vu.

David Cameron was going to crack

0:57:050:57:11

down on tax avoidance. Without being

cynical, do you think anything is

0:57:110:57:17

going to change?

EU should be the

vehicle for dealing with this. It

0:57:170:57:22

has to be done internationally. One

country on its own cannot sort out a

0:57:220:57:29

global tax problem but it seems to

be caught up in the weeds yet again

0:57:290:57:32

of individual self-interest.

Politically, it's like manner from

0:57:320:57:39

heaven for Jeremy Corbyn. This plays

to his narrative about the rich

0:57:390:57:42

doing terribly well and the poor

people on posterity.

They could do

0:57:420:57:50

something on Crown dependencies and

publication, transparency, that sort

0:57:500:57:54

of thing. It would be a brilliant

way of demonstrating they are not

0:57:540:57:57

the party of the rich.

As part of

the Brexit negotiations, the might

0:57:570:58:05

say Crown dependencies, you've got

to get a grip on them.

It's going to

0:58:050:58:11

it be easier to make that case if

they are flexible about a trade

0:58:110:58:16

deal. MEPs would be more credible on

this if they weren't subject to a

0:58:160:58:24

low tax rate, lower than any of the

member states tax rates in cell.

0:58:240:58:27

Being an MEP is a form of tax

avoidance. Let's not forget that the

0:58:270:58:35

top 1% of earners are paying 27% of

the total income tax take, higher

0:58:350:58:40

than it's ever been before and

higher than under any Labour

0:58:400:58:43

government.

0:58:430:58:48

That's all for now, thanks

to all my guests and goodbye.

0:58:480:58:55

Norman Smith is joined by Toby Young from the Spectator and Rachel Sylvester from the Times to look at how Brexit negotiations are going and speak to Jamie Bartlett from Demos on the threat of Russian cyber-attacks. Business journalist Louise Cooper helps to bust some of the economic jargon ahead of the budget, plus Labour MEP Alex Mayer and UKIP leader Henry Bolton discuss the EU's new defence agreement.


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