Poland will be richer than UK by 2030, says billionaire
One well-known UK banker has warned that a post-Brexit Britain is in "geriatric decline."
A British media site reported that when adjusted for buying power parity, Poland's GDP is currently £28,200, compared to £35,000 in the United Kingdom.
Brexit has pushed the United Kingdom into a "sort of geriatric decline," and it will be left in the dust in the not-too-distant future, according to renowned British entrepreneur Guy Hands.
Hands, the head of the private equity firm Terra Firma, made the remarks on Friday on a British podcast. Hands predicted that the UK would be surpassed in wealth by Poland by 2030. “I look at the UK and see that, in 2030, Poland will be healthier than we are,” Hands said, adding, “In 2040, we will be the poor man in Europe.”
He believes the UK should never have left the European Union (EU) and is disappointed that British leaders aren't discussing the idea of returning.
Read next: UK and EU reach deal to solve post-Brexit trade dispute in N. Ireland
Brexit, according to the millionaire, has returned the UK to the 1970s, a period of hardship for the country marked by high inflation, high unemployment, frequent power outages, and worker strikes. However, Hands sees some advantages to Brexit and believes the UK should take advantage of the opportunity to amend its "extraordinarily complex" labor rules. He calls the legislation a "nightmare" in comparison to that of other European countries.
"At the moment, the UK has only two choices if it wants to be competitive on the world stage,” Hands said. “Either it dismantles much of what political parties spent 30 years putting in place, or it goes back to Europe."
He complained that since the UK left the EU, it has “lost none of that bureaucracy, if anything we’ve actually increased it.”
Hands' views are consistent with recent Labour Party projections that Poland will surpass the UK in economic development by 2030, with Hungary and Romania surpassing it by 2040. "I'm not comfortable with that, with a trajectory that will soon see Britain overtaken by Poland," Labour Party leader Keir Starmer said.
Read next: Brexit accounts for 6% of the food price increase in the UK