Brexit and Global Wealth Chains

Leonard Seabrooke, Duncan Wigan*

*Corresponding author for this work

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    Abstract

    One vision of a post Brexit Britain is of a political economy sustained by highly flexible labour markets, light touch regulation, and a hyper competitive low-tax regime. This article focuses on the tax element, evaluating the prospects of this vision’s realization on the basis of the attributes of the British political economy, the substance of the Britain’s new found freedoms and the forces at play in the European and international regulatory environment. Britain is seeking a smooth transition via a strategy of upgrading and expanding national position in global wealth chains (GWCs). Occupying space in GWCs requires a series of careful balancing acts between making a tax offer attractive to mobile capital and maintaining revenue, designing a low-tax regime and staying within the boundaries of accepted practice established by multilateral rules and norms, and between multiple, often conflicting, goals that Britain must simultaneously pursue as it leaves the European Union. With hard Brexit, Britain will pursue this vision, but these balances are likely to prove illusive.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalGlobalizations
    Volume14
    Issue number6
    Pages (from-to)820-829
    Number of pages10
    ISSN1474-7731
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2017

    Keywords

    • Global wealth chains
    • Taxation
    • Brexit
    • European Union
    • OECD
    • Britain

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