Friday, 22 June 2018 06:01



The SNP’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson Stephen Gethins MP has warned that time is running out for Theresa May to prevent a “Brexit business exodus”, and to put the interests of the country ahead of the interests of the Conservatives’ hard Brexiteers, following a risk assessment published by Airbus which warns of the "catastrophic" consequences if the UK was to crash out of the single market and customs union.

The company warned that the UK leaving the EU with a no-deal outcome “directly threatens Airbus's future in the UK.”

Airbus currently employs around 14,000 people at 25 different sites across the UK, and supports over 100,000 jobs in the wider supply chain. 

The SNP Scottish Government has set out a compromise position which seeks to keep Scotland and the rest of the UK inside the single market and customs union in order to safeguard the economy, jobs and the operations of small and large businesses.  

Earlier this week, the EU parliament’s chief Brexit coordinator, Guy Verhofstadt, backed the SNP Scottish Government’s compromise position. When asked by SNP MP Joanna Cherry QC at the Brexit committee whether remaining in the single market and customs union would provide “a solution for the whole of the UK”. Mr Verhofstadt stated that “there will be no objection by the European side if the UK government is going in such a direction.”

Commenting, Stephen Gethins MP said:

“This stark warning from Airbus is the most serious signal yet about the catastrophic effects of the extreme Brexit which Tory infighting is driving us ever close to.

“Time is now running short to avoid the kind of cliff-edge, no deal scenario which would see us crash out of the single market and customs union with nothing to take its place. 

“None of this should come as any surprise to the UK government, which has at every turn ignored the mounting economic evidence and the concerns of businesses over the catastrophic threat a no-deal outcome poses.

“There is a very real risk that unless Theresa May puts the interests of the country ahead of the interests of the Conservatives’ hard Brexiteers, then the dangers of a Brexit business exodus grows day by day.

“The UK government’s own economic analysis has warned of the damaging impact a no-deal scenario with have on the UK, now one of the world's largest companies has laid out its serious concerns and its future in the UK. What will it take before the Prime Minister wakes up to the overwhelming case to keep the UK within the single market – which is around eight times bigger than the UK market alone – and customs union?"

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