I have always been clear that I would prefer to leave the EU with a Withdrawal Agreement and I will be working hard in Parliament to avoid a no deal exit. While I have no doubt that the UK could thrive in the long-term, I believe that leaving without a deal in the short-term would damage the prospects of those in this country who could least afford it.
The Government's own analysis has predicted that leaving the EU without a deal could mean that GDP is around 7.7 per cent smaller over the next 15 years. This would be challenging in the short-term but I am confident that the UK would thrive in the long-term. Forbes has ranked the UK has as the number one place to do business in the world for two consecutive years and a survey published by KPMG has found that CEOs in the United States, India, China and Japan are more likely to invest in the UK after the country leaves the EU.
The Government is planning for every eventuality in the UK's exit from the EU and over £4 billion has been provided on withdrawal preparations including for a no deal exit. For instance, important steps are already being taken to support manufacturing industries including an increase in the annual investment allowance from £200,000 to £1 million and support for the Made Smarter programme promoting automation and digitalisation in the industry.
I understand your concern about statements made during the Conservative Party leadership contest about the UK leaving on the 31 October whatever the circumstances. The Article 50 process has already been extended on two occasions and I believe that any further extension would, of course, be deeply regrettable. I am confident, however, that the next Prime Minister will secure an exit deal that Conservative MPs can support and avoid such a situation.
Last updated June 2019