This book analyzes how the EU referendum in the United Kingdom came to pass and what the foreseeable consequences are for the UK, Europe, US and world economy. The Brexit decision represents a momentous event for Europe, which weakens the EU and shifts the global balance of power. Welfens argues the EU has lost its appeal and is not in keeping with the twenty-first century, which is being shaped by Asia and digital innovations. The subject of immigration from EU countries played a key role in the Brexit decision, with an anti-EU campaign that was profoundly biased. The estimated impact of the referendum was deeply distorted by the broadly inadequate information produced by the Cameron government, which omitted the expected 10 percent loss in income caused by leaving the EU. With this this information, there could have been a clear pro-EU majority. In the absence of a second referendum, one cannot know what the British electorate really wants. Both the Brexit decision and new President of the United States Donald Trump's approach to European disintegration dynamics also raise serious questions about the future of transatlantic relations.
Paul J.J. Welfens is Jean Monnet Professor for European Economic Integration, Chair for Macroeconomics at the Schumpeter School of Business and Economics, and President of the European Institute for International Economic Relations at the University of Wuppertal, Germany. He is Research Fellow at IZA, Germany, and Non-Resident Senior Research Fellow at AICGS/Johns Hopkins University, USA.
1. Introduction Part I. The Referendum Process and Poltico-Economic Aspects2. Brexit: A Campaign and a Fatal Communication Disaster3. A Sequencing of the Economic Effects of Brexit Part II. UK, US and EU Perspectives4. Aspects of British History and Policy5. Key Issues for the New British Government6. Medium-term UK Macroeconomic Perspectives7. Brexit from a US Point of View8. Trump Policies Expected to Contradict 70 Years of American Principles and Rationale9. Can Brexit be an Economic Success and What Effects can be Expected for the EU27? Part III. EU Developments10. What is the EU? A Redistribution and Trade Engine with a Political Element11. The History of European Integration and the Role of Rules12. EU Integration Perspectives after Brexit13. Eurozone Perspectives and Reform Needs Part IV. Consequences14. A Second Brexit Referendum: A Scenario for Staying in the EU15. Beyond Brexit: Inequality Dynamics and A European Social Market Economy16. Conclusions