Government impact analysis suggests North East will be region worst-hit by Brexit

Posted On: 
7th February 2018

The industrial heartlands of the north-east and the West Midlands will face the greatest economic hit from Brexit, according to the Government's own impact analysis.

The regional breakdown suggests former industrial areas will be worst-hit by Brexit
Credit: 
PA

The figures are part of the controversial report leaked last week that suggested the UK would be worse off under every scenario.

MPs have now been able to read sections of the analysis after the Government backed down on a Commons vote last week that would have forced them to release the papers.

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Downing Street has played down the report's findings, saying it does not take account of Theresa May's preferred option of a bespoke EU-UK trade deal. 

But the latest projections are likely to re-ignite the debate in Parliament about the Government's plan to take the UK out of both the single market and the customs union.

Tory MP Stephen Hammond has already laid amendments to the upcoming Trade Bill to give MPs a vote on a possible 'Norway option' of remaining in the European Free Trade Association.

The regional breakdown suggests London and the south-east will come out of Brexit relatively unscathed. 

The analysis suggests the capital would miss out on 3.5% of economic growth over the next 15 years in a 'no deal' scenario, and 2% under a free trade deal. 

 

Government impact analysis suggests North East economy could shrink 16% after Brexit

 

However the outlook for other areas are much more pessimistic. A 'no deal' scenario is forecast to knock 16% off of growth in the North East and 13% in the West Midlands. 

With a trade deal in place, the two worst-hit regions would still see a decline of 8% and 11% respectively over the forecast period.

The devolved regions are also projected to suffer, with Northern Ireland losign out on 12% of growth if the UK falls back to WTO rules, and Wales and Scotland losing 9% and 9.5% respectively.

Labour MP Stephen Doughty, a supporter of the pro-European Open Britain campaign, expressed dismay at the findings, saying:

“People in every corner of the United Kingdom will be shocked to see the Government’s own assessment of the damage Brexit will do to their communities. It is utterly shameful that people all across this country are having to rely on leaks to find out how much damage a hard, destructive Brexit will do to their local economies and the country as a whole.

“The Government cannot continue to try and hide tax-payer funded analysis from the public, just because they’re afraid of the political consequences. The full Brexit impact assessments, along with any other economic analysis of Brexit outcomes, must be published in full, now."