Brit expats in Shanghai hold debate over election and Brexit

Published:  10 Dec at 6 PM
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A debate held by a group of British expatriates living and working in Shanghai reinforced the strength of feeling held by UK citizens overseas.

Brexit is still of critical importance to British expats in China, even although they’re many thousands of miles away from home. Last Sunday’s debate in Shanghai was dominated by this week’s election and its possible effect should Johnson remain as Prime Minister and Brexit become a reality.

The debate took place at one of British expats’ favourite bars, with five speakers representing the five UK political parties taking a part in the election. In this expat community, the general election is being seen as a second Brexit referendum, with all political parties putting up their own ideas for breaking down the political log jam, uniting the country and kick-starting the UK’s paralysed economy. Discussion on the issue took up most of the event, focusing on the effect of the chaos on the sterling exchange rate. Another concern was the post-Brexit change in the style of consular access available to Brit expats living and working overseas.

Focal points in the discussion included the fact that the post-Brexit British economy is expected to suffer even more due to competition from emerging Asian economies. Malaysia, India and Indonesia were three emerging mega-economies, all of which are expected to dwarf the UK once it’s no longer part of the European Union’s vast trading bloc. Also mentioned was the threat of a trade deal with the USA, with the majority believing it almost certainly would not be in Britain’s favour.

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