Introduction of The European Union
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The rules, regulations, and policies of the European Union have an influence on its member countries. The UK being a member country, the policies made by the European Union automatically have an effect under the European Communities Act, Section 2(1), of 1972. The areas that are affected by the European policies include agriculture, environment, trade, and financial services. It needs to be noted that the European Union policies also affect the immigration areas of the UK. However, it needs to be noted that the UK is not a member country of the European Union since 31st January 2020, and currently, it is going through a transition process.
Environmental Policy of the European Union that affects the UK
The Environmental Policy of the European Union deals with the fundamentals of precautions, prevention, and the betterment of the environmental aspects. The European Union deals with the full domain of the environmental policy framework.
It needs to be noted that, according to the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU), under Article 11 and Article 191-193, the European Union can act on the different areas of the environmental policy. The European Union's areas are climate change, air, waste management, and water (Zito et al. 2019). However, it needs to be noted that the imposition of the subsidiary laws has limited the area of functions. The quantitative aspect of water resource management, the choice of the source of energy as well, as the energy supply structure gets limited by the subsidiary laws (Sääksjärvi, 2020). The European Union acts on the Environmental Action Programs, Development of Sustainable Strategies, and International Cooperation on Environmental Aspects. It needs to be noted that the Assessment of the Environmental Impacts and Public Participation is also looked after by the European Union (Kluza et al. 2021). The European Union also implements the laws, their enforcement, and monitoring.
These Environmental policies automatically come into effect in the UK because it is a member country of the European Union. However, it needs to be noted that the UK is no longer a member country of the European Union since 31st January 2020 and expired on 31st December 2020. It has been going through a transition process, and the European Union will be assisting the UK in framing its own set of policies.
Trade Policy of the European Union that affects the UK
The objective of the trading policies of the European Union is to remove the barriers to trade and increase the opportunities for the trading of European companies. Article 207 deals with the trade policy of the European Union. It is to be remembered as several member countries are under the European Union; it takes up the responsibility of negotiating the agreements and policies (Smith et al. 2018). The European Union holds a position of importance in the global market as it acts as the spokesperson for different countries.
The important functional areas of the European Union are:
Making agreements with countries that are not a member of the European Union so that the trading opportunities can be increased.
Formulating policies to protect the member countries; from unfair competition, especially the producers.
The areas of agreement of the European Union with the United Kingdom deal with the goods and services, fisheries, energy, digital trade, social security, and others. Intellectual property, law enforcement, aviation, and transportation come under the functional areas of the European Union (Alola et al. 2019). Due to the agreement, both the European Union and the United Kingdom have to bear some obligations. It ensures certain rights to both the governing bodies as well. The agreement is monitored by an institutional framework that is also responsible for settling any dispute between the two bodies.
The points enlisted under the agreement are to be maintained, and it is also ensured that the non-members do not enjoy the same kind of benefits that comes along with the agreement. Under the European Council, it is ensured that the rectitude of the Single Market remains protected.
Evaluation of the effectiveness of these policies
The Environmental Policies of the European Union deal with the diverse aspects of the environment such as air, water, climate, and others. The United Kingdom had been facing challenges depending on the environmental aspects in 2017. In the year 2017, the TAIEX-EIR Peer-to-Peer (EIR P2P) tool was launched with assistance from the European Union experts. This helped the UK in meeting the challenges of the environment.
There have been positive impacts as per the report published in the year 2018. The plan for Green Future has formulated long-term environmental policies (Zaslavskaya, 2022). It is considered that the UK is one of the best performers of the member countries in terms of environmental policies. The UK has undertaken to use alternative fuels for the vehicles, and it is a considerably good measure. It has been observed that in 2016 the alternative fuel was used approximately 10 times more than in 2013. The UK is the first member of the European Union that has been able to reduce the price differentiation in petrol versus diesel to zero.
The trade policy of the European Union majorly deals with sustainable and digital transformation, formulating global rules for the sustainable functioning of trade and enforcement of laws. The technological advancement policy of the European Union helps in developing the value chain (Bayer and Aklin, 2020). It has helped in reducing the poverty line. However, the developments at times may lead to disruptive effects and lead to growing inequalities in terms of financial aspects. Effects on the economy of the country may be observed. The trade policy includes the environmental aspects, and therefore the policies have been formulated in terms of sustainability. It is considered that the European Green Deal is a good strategy that considers the country's intangible benefits. Initiatives have been taken to reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions (GHG) by 2050. This initiative will have a progressive and transformational effect on the country's economy and impact its trade patterns. The digital transformation has also positively impacted trade relations. This initiative will help the trade to evolve.
The trade policy determines the negotiations and agreements with the different countries that help generate employment and contribute to the country's economic growth.
The potential impact of Brexit on UK's social policy
As the UK separates it from the European Union, there can be a notable impact during and post the transition period.
Brexit may have an important impact on the social policy of the United Kingdom, mostly by affecting the country's economy. It needs to be understood that the long-term economic policies of Brexit may be highly uncertain (Brown et al. 2019). The main reason for this is because it includes diversified aspects such as trade, finance, migration, regional services, and many more. However, it is certain that all these aspects depend majorly on the trade relationship of the UK with the European Union. Brexit may have hard and negative effects on the UK even in a closely associated scenario with the Single Market.
On the other hand, Brexit can have an effect by impacting the migration system. It needs to be taken into consideration that the strict regulations imposed on migration and the weak economic conditions will make the UK to be a less preferred site for migration. A low rate of migration can have a significant impact on the services, majorly in the service and health care sectors.
Another notable aspect is that once separated from the European Union; the UK will not be a part of the Charter of Fundamental Rights that had been put to enforcement by the European Union (Hantrais, 2018). It may be presumed that there will be notable gaps in the rights of the children and the right to dignity under the Equality Acts of 2006 and 2010. Brexit may lead to the vulnerability of the rights of the citizens of the UK because the rights of the citizens won't remain protected any longer.
It can be stated that the separation of the UK from the European Union can lead to its separation from the single market. This can include public procurement approaches and industrial strategies. Brexit can increase the competitive advantages in the areas that involve private providers.
Brexit can have a noticeable effect on the children in the UK, which can be due to the effects of poverty. The children of the UK can also be affected on the health and educational aspects. The children whose families cannot provide for their food and shelter will be the ones to be most affected.
It needs to be noted that based on the terms of Brexit, it may be considered that it would be necessary to have some mutual grounds for maintaining the environmental standards. However, there are chances that due to the separation of the UK from the European Union, the environmental policies and standards can be impacted negatively. Brexit will have to face the challenge of maintaining effective coordination with the UK in the challenges that it won't be able to handle individually. Brexit will also end the free migration between the UK and the European Union, which will have considerable impacts.
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Bayer, P. and Aklin, M., 2020. The European Union emissions trading system reduced CO2 emissions despite low prices. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 117(16), pp.8804-8812.
Brown, R., Liñares-Zegarra, J. and Wilson, J.O., 2019. The (potential) impact of Brexit on UK SMEs: regional evidence and public policy implications. Regional Studies, 53(5), pp.761-770.
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Kluza, K., Zio?o, M., B?k, I. and Spoz, A., 2021. Achieving environmental policy objectives through the implementation of sustainable development goals. The case for European Union countries. Energies, 14(8), p.2129.
Sääksjärvi, S.C., 2020. Positioning the Nordic Countries in European Union Environmental Policy. The Journal of Environment & Development, 29(4), pp.393-419.
Smith, A., Barbu, M., Campling, L., Harrison, J. and Richardson, B., 2018. Labor regimes, global production networks, and European Union trade policy: Labor standards and export production in the Moldovan clothing industry. Economic geography, 94(5), pp.550-574.
Zaslavskaya, N., 2022. Regional dimension of international environmental cooperation: the European Union environmental policy and its relations with its neighbours in the case of Russia. Stosunki Mi?dzynarodowe–International Relations, 2(5), p.5.
Zito, A.R., Burns, C. and Lenschow, A., 2019. Is the trajectory of European Union environmental policy less certain?. Environmental Politics, 28(2), pp.187-207.