Britain's new Foreign Secretary and Trade Minister back CX recommendations

The UK's new Prime Minister is in the process of appointing her first Cabinet. There is already good news for CX and Commonwealth supporters, most notably in the appointments of Boris Johnson and Liam Fox.

Both are friends to Commonwealth Exchange and have written forewords to our reports. Here are key excerpts:

"It seems that almost all parts of the Commonwealth are brimming with a new energy and optimism, at precisely the time that the European Union is struggling. As we reconsider Britain’s place in the world, I want us to reconsider how we engage with Commonwealth peoples...

"...The UK has bonds of history, language, law, family and customs across the world and we would be foolish not to make more of these at this time of profound global economic revival."

- Boris Johnson, Secretary of State for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, in his foreword to our report "How to Solve a Problem like a Visa"

"It may just be that the Commonwealth could be coming of age in the right way at the right time. It is a time to be bold."

 - Liam Fox, Secretary of State for International Trade, in his foreword to our report "The Commonwealth's Call to Duty"

Following the UK's vote to leave the EU, it is vital that the Commmonwealth is at the heart of our plans for trade, migration, security, and more. Find our full Brexit plan here.

Media wishing to arrange interviews or request a comment should email or call the media mobile listed here.

CX's plan for Brexit

As the dust settles on the UK's vote to leave the EU, the big question on everyones' lips is: What Now?

It is clear that the UK will have to negotiate a deal with the remaining EU but how should it go about it? And what about the rest of the world? Will free movement continue? Or perhaps be adapted to include a different set or subset of nations?

Commonwealth Exchange (CX) has a full plan for what to do next. Written by CX Directors Ralph Buckle and Tim Hewish, the plan was initially submitted to the Institute of Economic Affairs' Brexit Prize (in Tim's name) where it claimed a place on the podium and wide renown.

Since then, the plan has also been published as part of the IEA's "Brexit: Directions for Britain Outside the EU"

In addition, CX has published additional research around the topic, particularly focusing on immigration and trade policy:

Media wishing to arrange interviews or request a comment should email or call the media mobile listed here.

CX Director appears on ZDF to critique £35,000 migrant threshold

CX’s Co-Founder and Director Ralph Buckle appeared on ZDF’s (the German Public Broadcaster) Today in Europe programme to discuss the UK’s new £35,000 income threshold for non-EU migrants seeking settlement.

German speakers can watch the full programme here or the clipped interview below.

The clip also features CX's report How to Solve a Problem Like a Visa.

UPDATE: A further clip from the interview was shown on Friday. You can watch it below.

Media pick up on Commonwealth immigration polling

This week saw the launch of our Royal Commonwealth Society commissioned polling across Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the UK which showed overwhelming support for free movement between the four nations.

Headline figures show 70% of Australians, 75% of Canadians, 82% of New Zealanders, and 58% of Britons polled support free labour mobility.

The story received world wide media coverage both in print, online, radio, and TV. Highlights of which you can see below. More updates will be added throughout the week.

You can download a copy of our polling brief here.


The GuardianReciprocal living and working rights backed in UK, Australia, NZ and Canada

Daily MailGeorge Osborne's father-in-law Lord Howell backs the six in ten Britons who are happy allowing migration from the Commonwealth into UK


The Globe and MailCanadians support visa-free travel between some countries: poll

Global NewsCanadians want EU-style mobility between UK, Australia, New Zealand: poll


The AustralianPoll backs UK-Aust free mobility

ABC NewsAustralia, Canada, NZ and UK support EU-style free movement, new poll says Push for visa-free migration bloc in Australia, UK, Canada, and New Zealand

Daily Telegraph AustraliaPoll backs UK-Aust free mobility


New Zealand HeraldColonies want common rights

Stuff NZMassive support for visa-free 'migration bloc' between UK, NZ, Canada and Aus

Radio NZCommonwealth 'visa-free' idea popular

Craig Mackinlay MP calls for Brexit to offer fairer deal to Commonwealth citizens

Conservative MP for South Thanet Craig Mackinlay has cited the unfair deal Commonwealth citizens get from the UK among his reasons for supporting Brexit. Speaking in a Parliamentary debate about the UK's EU membership, Mr Mackinlay said:

"We have to recognise that trade has changed—that the world is now a global place and trade barriers have come down. A lot of these trade areas are good, friendly nations—Commonwealth nations. I always find it very strange that our friends—our kith and kin; our family—extract their wallets and purses and find, lo and behold, a note with a very familiar and loved face on it, but we deny them access to our country, and we are not allowed to speak to them on trade terms"

While Commonwealth Exchange does not take an institutional position on whether the UK should leave the EU, we do share Mr Mackinlay's frustrations, particularly on the issue of migration and visas, as highlighted in our report "How to Solve a Problem like a Visa" which shed light on the parlous state of Commonwealth migration and provided six practical proposals to improve the situation.

We have also published an award winning plan for what the UK should do if it were to leave the EU. Our proposals are based on a reinvigorated trading Commonwealth network. You can read it here.