Department for International Trade estimates £35 billion loss of future free trade benefits to UK economy under Government’s Brexit plan - People's Vote

Department for International Trade estimates £35 billion loss of future free trade benefits to UK economy under Government’s Brexit plan

New analysis of Department for International Trade impact assessments by the People’s Vote campaign has identified a £35 billion loss of future trade benefits to the UK.

On the day a new trade deal between the European Union and Japan comes into force, Liam Fox’s own department estimates that future free trade deals negotiated by the EU would bring a £35 billion benefit to the British economy if we remained in the EU. These benefits will not materialise for the UK due to the Government’s failure to achieve any guarantees that deals will be rolled over or new free trade deals could be replicated.

 

The future EU free trade agreements in impact assessments published by DIT cover:

  • Japan
  • Singapore
  • Canada
  • Ghana
  • Ecuador
  • The Common Market of Eastern and South Africa (Madagascar, Mauritius, Seychelles, Zimbabwe, and Comoros)

 

Aside from the overall £35 billion benefit to Britain’s GDP, the DIT state the agreements will:

  • Lower prices in the shops for UK households;
  • Increase product choice for consumers;
  • Save British businesses money by eliminating administrative burdens;
  • Bring about more investment in research and development;
  • Mean new opportunities for UK businesses, and greater competition in the economy; and
  • Guarantee sustainable development

 

Stephen Doughty MP, a leading supporter of People’s Vote, said:

“These documents published by Liam Fox’s own department show that it is the Government’s preferred option to reap the benefits of trade agreements which the EU has negotiated around the world. But under the Government’s plan for Brexit, Britain would be locked out of free trade agreements, meaning British business and taxpayers could lose out on at least £35 billion of proceeds.

“By being a member of the EU Britain has the benefits of EU free trade agreements that we helped negotiate with over 65 economies, but Liam Fox has so far failed to achieve any guarantees that these will be rolled over or that future free trade agreements under negotiation could be replicated.

“There is no form of Brexit that fulfils the promises made by Brexiters. Losing access to current and future trade deals will leave the UK with a far worse deal than we already have by remaining inside the EU. For Britain to sign its own trade deals will take Liam Fox years, and meanwhile the uncertainty will go on and on for British business, costing this country jobs, skills and investment. The only way forward is with a People’s Vote.”

/Ends

 

Notes to editors

DIT’s impact assessment of the EU-Japan free trade agreement

DIT states that this free trade agreement will deliver a net value of £25 billion to the British economy.

The impact assessment further states that the agreement will save British businesses money, lead to lower prices for UK households, and increase consumer choice:

“We estimate that UK businesses could save up to £266 million a year from the elimination of tariffs. Although it should be noted that some of this gain may be passed onto consumer in the form of lower prices.” (Department for International Trade, 24 May 2018, link)

“Furthermore, the EU-Japan EPA will increase the welfare of UK households by lowering the price of goods and services and by increasing consumer choice due to greater competition.” (Department for International Trade, 24 May 2018, link)

 

DIT’s impact assessment of the EU-Singapore free trade agreement

DIT states that this free trade agreement will deliver a net value of £1.1 billion to the British economy.

The impact assessment further states that the agreement will increase opportunity for British businesses, create greater competition in the economy, bring about more investment in research and development, and lead to lower prices for UK households.

“This will increase export opportunities for UK businesses, create greater competition and thus lower prices, increase innovation, investment in R&D and bring a greater variety of goods and services for consumers.” (Department for International Trade, 10 May 2018, link)

 

DIT’s impact assessment of the EU-Canada free trade agreement

DIT states that this free trade agreement will deliver a net value of £7.8 billion to the British economy.

The impact assessment further states that the agreement will increase opportunity for British businesses, and lead to lower prices for UK households.

“Furthermore, CETA will increase the welfare of UK households by lowering the price of final goods and services and by increasing consumer choice due to greater competition.” (Department for International Trade, 17 May 2018, link)

“CETA will enable UK firms to export and import at a lower cost and give more opportunity for UK businesses to bid for public procurement contracts in Canada. Furthermore, CETA will increase the welfare of UK households by lowering the price of final goods and services and increase consumer choice due to greater competition.” (Department for International Trade, 17 May 2018, link)

 

DIT’s impact assessment of the EU-Ecuador free trade agreement

DIT states that this free trade agreement will deliver a net value of £228 million to the British economy.

The impact assessment further states that the agreement will increase export opportunities, reduce prices for consumers, and guarantee legislation on sustainable development.

This is the government’s preferred option as it aims to increase the available export opportunities of EU businesses and reduce prices to the benefit of consumers. The agreement also intends to lock in binding legislation on sustainable development, intellectual property rights, sanitary and phytosanitary standards and public procurement into WTO law.” (Department for International Trade, 17 July 2018, link)

“Increase in choice and decreased prices of goods and services for consumers.” (Department for International Trade, 17 July 2018, link)

 

DIT’s impact assessment of the EU-Ghana free trade agreement

DIT states that this free trade agreement will deliver a net value of -£450,000 to the British economy.

However, the impact assessment states that this overall impact excludes the benefits of increased trade, a major element of the positive impact this agreement will have. DIT tentatively estimate these benefits to be a boost to bilateral trade of at least £10 million. (Department for International Trade, 4 July 2018, link)

The impact assessment further states that the agreement will help keep prices of goods and services lower for consumers.

“This will improve choice and help keep prices of goods and services lower for consumers.” (Department for International Trade, 4 July 2018,link)

 

DIT’s impact assessment of the EU-Eastern and South African states free trade agreement

DIT states that this free trade agreement will deliver a net value of -£220,000 to the British economy.

However, the impact assessment states that this overall impact excludes the benefits of increased trade, a major element of the positive impact this agreement will have. DIT tentatively estimate these benefits to be a boost to bilateral trade of at least £10 million. (Department for International Trade, 4 July 2018, link)

The impact assessment further states that the agreement will help keep prices of goods and services lower for consumers.

“This will improve choice and help keep prices of goods and services lower for consumers.” (Department for International Trade, 4 July 2018,link)