Government trying to run down clock to use the threat of ‘No-Deal’ so MPs vote for their bad deal – Sharon Hodgson, MP

Many people will be hugely concerned by Nissan’s decision to build the new X-Trail model in Japan rather than in Washington as originally planned.

Thursday, 14th February 2019, 08:22 am
Nissan plant.

Although there are to be no immediate job losses as a result of this decision, it does mean that 740 future jobs that would have come from the production of the new model have been lost.

Although there were a number of factors that led to Nissan taking this decision, including concerns around the transition away from diesel and falling sales of diesel vehicles, the ongoing uncertainty around Brexit and threat of a ‘No-Deal’ outcome undoubtedly played a part. This was confirmed by Nissan in its initial statement on the decision.

I have written to the Prime Minister, asking her to: confirm that any new application by Nissan for Government funding will be considered fairly and independently; rule out a ‘No-Deal’ Brexit and confirm when MPs will next get to vote on a renegotiated deal; and reconsider the option of negotiating a new customs union with the EU. A full copy of this letter can be found here.

This decision is a sign of just how damaging the ongoing uncertainty around Brexit is for businesses and our public services. There are just 43 days until we are due to leave the EU and there is still no clarity on what our trading arrangements will be the day after we have left.

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That means that some exporters will be putting products on ships tomorrow for a six-week journey to countries in Asia, not knowing whether those products will be let in when they arrive. Just last week a constituent with a small importing business wrote to me saying that their supplier from the EU has cancelled a major contract due to uncertainty around Brexit.

Major suppliers to care homes and hospitals are already stockpiling food, and the Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee (PSNC) has blamed current medicine shortages on a combination of factors including Brexit planning and stockpiling.

In recent weeks, there has been a significant increase in the number of people expressing their support for leaving the EU without a deal. It is being irresponsibly promoted as a way in which to bring the current chaotic situation to an end.

We have been a member of the EU and its predecessor for around 40 years. In that time, a huge number of complex and intricate regulations and laws have built up relating to food, medicine, trade, aerospace, manufacturing, finance, environmental protections, workers’ rights and much more. Removing a country from this huge network is a difficult and time consuming process. Suddenly withdrawing without an agreement would have a devastating impact on many aspects of our economy, and in turn on the livelihoods of my constituents.

It is unlikely that MPs will have the chance to have another ‘meaningful vote’ on the Prime Minister’s deal until the end of February. It’s clear that the Government is trying to run down the clock in order to use the threat of ‘No-Deal’ to get MPs to vote for their bad deal.

The Conservative Government should stop gambling with the future of our country and remove the threat of leaving the EU without a deal.