UK too weak to stand alone on world stage: Dutch PM
The United Kingdom is not strong enough to stand on its own on the world stage, Prime Minister Mark Rutte said in interviews with European media. "It is the British who will be left weakened after the Brexit, becoming a medium-sized economy. Neither the US nor the EU". According to Rutte, the power of the UK is "waning" compared to two or three years ago. The country alone is not big enough to play a significant role internationally, Spanish newspaper El Pais quoted him.
The United Kingdom is set to leave the European Union on March 30th, according to the current plans. So far there is no agreement in place regarding the relationship the UK will have with the EU after the Brexit. A withdrawal treaty reached by British Prime Minister Theresa May and EU negotiators was shot down by the British House of Commons in January. It seems increasingly likely that the British will leave the EU with no agreements in place, which will have major economic consequences for the UK and EU countries, including the Netherlands.
"My impression is that the ball is rolling towards the abyss and everyone is screaming for it to stop, but nobody is doing anything to stop it. At least, not on the British side", Rutte said, according to NU.nl. He denied that the EU is trying to trap the UK. "The EU wants to start the next phase and start a new relationship wit the British as soon as possible. But given May's attempts to renegotiate the Irish backstop, I do not know how this will end and if we can prevent a hard Brexit."