New research shows that 5.5 million jobs in the EU depend on trade with the UK while the Chief Executive and Director General of the German CBI has said it would be 'very, very foolish' to impose trade barriers and called for continued free trade between the UK and the EU if we Vote Leave.
Responding to Markus Kerber’s comments that fatally undermine the IN campaign’s claims of future trade barriers, Boris Johnson MP said:
‘After the incessant doom mongering of the IN campaign, we now hear the truth from the “Voice of German Industry” - that they would be desperate for free trade after we Vote Leave. Of course EU countries will continue trading with us on a tariff free basis - they would be damaging their own commercial interests if they didn’t. That’s why EU politicians would be banging down the door for a trade deal on Friday.
‘As Sir James Dyson said today, this is the last opportunity to regain control of our futures. If we want to take back control and have a more secure and more prosperous future, we have to Vote Leave on 23 June.’
Notes to editors
- The Chief Executive and Director General of the BDI, Markus Kerber, has called for continued free trade if the UK leaves the EU.
- The BDI is the German equivalent of the CBI.
- New research from the House of Commons Library shows 5.5 million jobs in the EU depend on trade with the UK.
- It is in other EU countries’ interests to strike a free trade agreement with the UK.
- Leading pro-EU campaigners have conceded the UK will easily strike a free trade deal with the EU.
The Chief Executive and Director General of the BDI, Markus Kerber, has called for continued free trade if the UK leaves the EU.
- Markus Kerber, the Chief Executive and Director General of the BDI, which represents German industry, has said his organisation would make the case for continued free trade in the event the UK votes to leave the European Union tomorrow.
- Mr Kerber said ‘Imposing trade barriers, imposing protectionist measures between our two countries – or between the two political centres, the European Union on the one hand and the UK on the other – would be a very, very foolish thing in the 21st century. The BDI would urge politicians on both sides to come up with a trade regime that enables us to uphold and maintain the levels of trade we have’ (BBC News, June 2016, link).
The BDI is the German equivalent of the CBI.
- The BDI describes itself as ‘the Voice of German Industry’ (BDI, June 2016, link).
- Markus Kerber is the Chief Executive and Director General of the BDI (BDI, 2016, link).
- George Osborne made a speech to its conference last November, which he described as an ‘impressive gathering of German industry and ingenuity’ (BDI speech, 3 November 2015, link).
New research shows 5.5 million jobs in the EU depend on trade with the UK.
- New research from the House of Commons Library has revealed a ‘rough estimate’ of over 5.5 million EU jobs dependent on exports to the UK (House of Commons Library, 2016, link). It’s in the EU’s interests to strike a free trade deal with the UK. They need a deal more than we do.
- The research concludes: ‘Compared to the figures for 2011, the number of EU jobs associated with exports to the UK has increased from 5.0 million to 5.5 million. This is because EU exports to the UK have increased by 10% in cash terms over this period. By contrast, the number of UK jobs associated with exports to the EU has fallen... as UK exports to the EU have fallen by 5% in cash terms between 2011 and 2014’ (House of Commons Library, 2016, link).
It is in other EU countries’ interests to strike a free trade agreement with the UK.
- The EU sells the UK far more than the UK sells the EU. In 2015, the UK bought £67.8 billion more in goods and services than the UK sold to the EU (ONS, March 2016, tab c, link).
- In 2014, 20 EU member states sold the UK more than the UK bought from them (ONS, October 2015, link).
- The UK is the EU's largest single export market for goods, larger even than the United States, with whom the EU is presently trying to negotiate a free trade agreement (NIESR, 2 November 2015, link).
Leading pro-EU campaigners have conceded the UK will easily strike a free trade deal with the EU.
- The Prime Minister, David Cameron, has admitted: 'If we were outside the EU altogether, we’d still be trading with all these European countries, of course we would ... Of course the trading would go on … There’s a lot of scaremongering on all sides of this debate. Of course the trading would go on' (The Andrew Marr Show, 6 January 2013, link).
- The Foreign Secretary, Philip Hammond, has admitted that a free trade agreement in goods ‘would be relatively simple to negotiate’ (Hansard, 26 February 2015, col. 501, link).
- The UK's former Ambassador to the EU and leading supporter of the IN campaign, Lord Kerr of Kinlochard, has admitted: ‘there is no doubt that the UK could secure a free trade agreement with the EU. That is not an issue’ (Lords Hansard, 2 November 2015, col. 1492, link).
- Even the pro-EU CBI has said: ‘the UK is highly likely to secure a Free Trade Agreement with the EU, and such an agreement would be likely to be negotiated at an extremely high level of ambition relative to other FTAs [free trade agreements]’ (CBI, 4 November 2013, link).
- The pro-EU Centre for European Reform has accepted that, ‘given the importance of the UK market to the eurozone, the UK would probably have little difficulty in negotiating an FTA’ (CER, June 2014, link).