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Brexit secretary Dominic Raab says he ‘hadn’t quite understood’ importance of EU trade to UK economy


Dominic Raab has been ridiculed after saying he “hadn’t fairly understood” the significance of cross-Channel commerce to the UK financial system.

The extraordinary admission got here because the Brexit secretary additionally warned buyers to count on much less selection of products if leaving the EU damages the commerce route from France.

Talking at an occasion for tech corporations, Mr Raab mentioned Theresa May was pursuing a future commerce deal that recognised the “peculiar geographic financial entity” of the UK, as an island nation.

“I hadn’t fairly understood the total extent of this, however if you happen to have a look at the UK and have a look at how we commerce in items, we’re significantly reliant on the Dover-Calais crossing,” he mentioned.

“And that is among the the explanation why we’ve got wished to ensure we’ve got a selected and really proximate relationship with the EU, to make sure frictionless commerce on the border.”

The remark drew scorn from the scientist and broadcaster Brian Cox, who tweeted: “How might it probably come as a shock to Dominic Raab that our most vital commerce gateway is that which is closest geographically to our most vital market?”

Nicky Morgan, the previous Conservative cupboard minister who advocates a comfortable Brexit, tweeted merely: “Gulp’ #enoughsaid.”

And Jo Stevens, a Labour supporters of the anti-Brexit Finest for Britain group, mentioned: “These feedback are stunning.

“We lastly have an admission of what we have identified all alongside – that the Brexiteers hadn’t actually thought by way of any of the impacts of leaving the EU.

“British jobs, provides and providers depend on key border crossings just like the Dover strait and the truth that the Brexit Secretary is just simply realising this can be a critical trigger for concern.”

The gaffe comes after Mr Raab was forced to backtrack on a declare that the Brexit settlement could be in place by 21 November, because the talks proceed.

Within the speech on Wednesday night, Mr Raab additionally dismissed the “threat of main shortages” if the UK didn’t protect frictionless commerce with the EU.

However he mentioned: “I feel in all probability the common shopper won’t concentrate on the total extent to which the selection of products that we’ve got within the shops are depending on one or two very particular commerce routes.”


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