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Sun 26 May 2019
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The revelations in the Government’s ‘Implications for Business and Trade of a No Deal Brexit’ report are an Alarming Wake-Up Call. But can the public hear it?

Tonight the Independent Group – a breakaway group of three ex-Conservative and eight ex-Labour MPs disaffected with Brexit – took credit for a new Government release of information about the projected impact of leaving without a deal.

The Report’s conclusion is that “the short time remaining before 29 March 2019 does not allow Government to unilaterally mitigate the effects of no deal.”

It was the group’s first pledge as they threatened the Government with Contempt proceedings if they failed to release the No Deal impact documents within 48 hours.

The revelations are stark according to the Implications for Business and Trade of a No Deal Brexit is not ready for a No Deal Brexit, and it will cost businesses billions on administrative costs alone.

Here are Just a few of the KEY warnings from the report-

  • Government Departments across the board are NOT on track for a no deal. Specifically, they are not on track for just under one-third of ‘the most critical’ projects.
  • Customs Admin at ports will affect 240,000 UK businesses and cost them £13bn per annum in administrative costs alone, the HMRC estimates. The report states- “around 240,000 UK businesses that currently only trade with the EU would need to interact with customs processes for the first time, should they continue to trade with the EU. HMRC has estimated that the administrative burden on businesses from customs declarations alone, on current (2016) UK-EU trade in goods could be around £13bn p.a. (not accounting for any behavioural change).”
  • There will be shortages of some foods, price increases, and the food supply industry is altogether unprepared. “In the absence of other action from Government, some food prices are likely to increase, and there is a risk that consumer behaviour could exacerbate, or create, shortages in this scenario. As of February 2019, many businesses in the food supply industry are unprepared for a no deal scenario.”
  • Northern Ireland will fare worse than the rest of the UK. “the cumulative impact from a ‘no deal’ scenario is expected to be more severe in Northern Ireland than in Great Britain, and to last for longer.”

The Report’s conclusion is that “the short time remaining before 29 March 2019 does not allow Government to unilaterally mitigate the effects of no deal.”

“Even where it can take unilateral action, the lack of preparation by businesses and individuals is likely to add to the disruption experienced in a no deal scenario,” the report says.

For developments on this and other executive overreach across government, Follow our investigation In Contempt, Democracy in Darkness. You can send any tips to alex.v.winter@pm.me, who is tracking this issue.

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