The Falkland Islands were excluded from trade deals between the United Kingdom and the European Union and will not be part of any commercial, tax or customs agreements negotiated. This decision was perceived as a victory for Argentina but the South American nation’s ambitions are seen as a threat by Falkland Island residents who fear their needs will not be listened to. Speaking to Al Jazeera English, Daniel Filmus, Secretary of affairs pertaining to the Malvinas (the Latin American name for the Falkland’s) said: “We are still in the early stages after Brexit but Europe has signalled a change in its position on the islands.
“There was a similar case at the UN on the Chagos Archipelago (a British overseas territory in the Indian Ocean).”
In May 2019 the UK lost a United Nations vote of 114-6 on its ownership of the Chagos Archipelago and now has six months to return the island to Mauritius.
The Chagos Archipelago are a group of 7 atolls 500 kilometres off Mauritius and include more than 60 tropical islands which contain a US military base.
Hungary was the only EU country to vote in favour of the U.K. in that vote.
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The pressure from Argentina comes as the Falkland’s face heavy export tariffs to Europe.
No overseas territories were allowed to vote in the Brexit referendum despite being heavily impacted by these tariff changes.
On fish and squid alone these tariffs to Europe stand at between 6 percent and 18 percent.
The agriculture industry on the islands which is mostly fishing and sheepherding accounts for 95 percent of the island’s economy so the tariffs impact the local economy heavily.
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The sovereignty dispute over the South Atlantic islands led to the Falklands War between Britain and Argentina in 1982.
The conflict lasted for 74 days and left almost 1,000 dead.
Despite losing the Falkland’s War Argentina continues to demand that the islands are theirs which were inherited from the Spanish colonial rule.