Newcastle – Britain’s trade problem – and why it matters

Tuesday, 9th April 2024 , categories: Meetings, Newcastle, trade

The UK now imports vastly more than we export. What are the social and economic consequences and how can we tackle them?

You are warmly invited to join us at The Telegraph, Orchard Street, Newcastle Upon Tyne NE1 3NY (behind the Central Station), for our next meeting on Tuesday 9th April 2024 at 7:00pm. See here for location.

Introduction by William Clouston, leader of the Social Democratic Party.

William will explain the real roots of our present economic crisis, namely, the UK’s huge trade problem.  Each year we buy vastly more than we sell and, consequently, we accumulate debt.  And yet our persistent negative balance of trade is rarely discussed in political discourse and most of our elected representatives seem ignorant of the basic economics of international trade (imports can be paid for in three ways – by exporting goods, by selling assets we already have or buy issuing debt).

Running multi-billion pound trade deficits has filled our homes with imported goods and trinketry but it has beggared the country.  It has gutted our manufacturing, shifted production overseas and obliterated the industrial wage which used to be the foundation of family life.  The social consequences have been grave.  As the factories closed, the drug dealers moved in.  To cure the problem, we need a meaningful trade and industrial policy.

We need to end our indifference to what is made where and by whom and to who owns what.  As the pandemic showed, successful states will increasingly prioritise domestic production and national resilience in food and energy over utopian dreams of global free trade.

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