This week i warned MPs in Parliament that leaving the EU would result in tariffs from the EU on British exports as most EU countries have a trade deficit with Britain.
In a question to Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne, I asked: “Only two countries, Germany and the Netherlands, run a surplus with Britain, the rest have a deficit. So does he agree that if we did have Brexit, the other countries would vote for tariffs, and indeed so would Germany to stop Japanese car imports?”
“Has the Government modelled what would be the impact of those tariffs on employment levels in the short and medium terms, and on inward investment? Disastrous, I suggest.”
The vast majority of EU countries sell less to Britain than we buy from them, with only Germany and Holland selling more to us than we do to them. Therefore if we leave the EU the others will vote to introduce tariffs on UK exports. This would be a disaster for exporters to the EU, and to the 25,000 jobs in Swansea Bay that rely on these exports, to what is the world’s largest market.
The tariffs would also have a drastic effect on inward investment. Foreign manufacturers like Ford, Toyota and Airbus invest in the UK as a tariff-free platform into the EU. Voting to leave would put thousands of jobs and millions in investment at risk across West Wales.
I also said to Boris Johnson that as the vast majority of EU countries had a trade deficit with the UK we would face tariffs, he had no answer.