Nations that stay isolated remain poor
Re: The Brexit debate.
In the interest of truth and accuracy it is necessary to point out that the free trade zone in Europe is EFTA (the European Free Trade Association). It was set up in 1960 with the UK as a founder member. It consisted of countries that were unwilling or unable to join the European Economic Community and the countries became known as the outer seven.
The UK and some other members went on to join the EEC, now the European Union. EFTA still has four members – Norway, Iceland, Switzerland and Liechtenstein. All the members are parties to the Agreement of the European Economic Area, which allows them to access the EU’s single market.
The idea of liberalising and expanding trade through economic unions is, of course, not limited to Europe. Here in Southeast Asia we have the Asean Economic Community (AEC), which recognises that peace and prosperity will not be achieved by remaining as isolated states.