The grim cost of Brexit to date
The scale of UK payments to the EU was a major part of the Leave campaign’s argument for Brexit. Remember the message on the red bus that £350m per week could be saved for spending on the NHS if the UK left the EU.
Far from creating savings it now looks like the cost of exiting by the time 31st December 2020 comes round will be be almost equal the the entire cost of the UK’s 47 years of membership contributions. The estimated cost has already reached £130bn, climbing to over £200bn by the end of the year.
In addition, according to Business Insider, analysis by the Tory government suggests a deal along the lines of that backed by the UK Parliament will reduce annual economic growth by 6.7% compared to remaining in the EU. This will be a damaging hit to the UK economy, making many households significantly poorer, with average real terms wages likely to fall by 6.4%, over the coming decade, than if we had remained in the EU.
As Johnson has removed legally binding commitments to retain existing EU working regulations from the EU Withdrawal agreement, relegating them to the non-binding Political Declaration, workers’ rights will undoubtedly be hit. And the hit to the economy will mean either higher borrowing or savage slashing of public services, perhaps both.
Of course none of this is a surprise since the Scottish Government flagged this up three years ago, with even worse outcomes for Scotland. But the figures were rubbished and dismissed by the UK government and by Brexiters as scaremongering.