100 things we now know about Brexit that we didn’t know in 2016
PUBLISHED: 11:44 19 December 2018 | UPDATED: 12:05 19 December 2018
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With 100 days to go until the government’s proposed Brexit leaving date, campaigners for a People’s Vote have published a list of 100 things the British public know about Brexit now that they were not told during the referendum in 2016.
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A spokesman for the People’s Vote campaign said: “Whichever way people voted two years ago, nobody voted for a deal that makes them poorer and offers less control. Brexit campaigners promised we would continue to enjoy ‘the exact same benefits’ of being in the EU, while ‘taking back control’.
“But these promises have been broken – not because the Government won’t keep them - but because they can’t be kept; no one can keep promises that are contradictory.
“As this list shows, the proposed Brexit deal delivers the exact opposite of what was promised.”
1. Britain would have to pay a £50 billion divorce bill simply to leave the EU. The Government has agreed to pay a £39 billion fee to leave the EU, and the National Audit Office has said that this amount could rise by at least £10 billion (National Audit Office, 20 June 2018)
2. That there could be a hard border in Northern Ireland. Taking the UK out of the EU’s Single Market and Customs Union would mean that there would have to be new controls at the border between Northern Ireland and the Republic.
3. That Britain’s GDP would be hit to the tune of £100 billion by 2033. This is the economic damage inflicted under the Government’s Brexit deal, according to an analysis by the independent National Institute for Economic and Social Research (NIESR, 26 November 2018)
4. Brexit would go on for years. In the referendum, people were told that the process of leaving would be quick and easy. Now we are faced with years of transition and talks, and potentially further negotiations beyond that.
5. The European Arrest Warrant would be lost. This vital scheme that helps Britain kick out 1000 foreign criminals each year cannot be kept after Brexit, according to EU Chief Negotiator Michel Barnier (BBC News, 19 June 2018)
6. The average UK person would be worse off by more than £1000 by 2033. This is the amount which the economic hit from the Government’s Brexit deal would leave workers out of pocket according to an analysis by the independent National Institute for Economic and Social Research (NIESR, 26 November 2018)
7. That there would be no Brexit dividend. Contrary to what Leave campaigners claimed, the Government’s fiscal watchdog - the Office for Budget Responsibility - has confirmed that there will not be a financial dividend to be gained from Brexit under any scenario (Financial Times, 11 October 2018)
8. The Government has to prepare for a lorry park in Kent. Under the name Operation Brock, planning is ongoing for a lorry park on the M20 to cope with the disruption Brexit could cause at the Dover-Calais crossing (BBC News, 31 July 2018).
9. That the value of the pound would drop by 15%. The pound was at 1.26 against the Euro on 15 June 2016, a week before the referendum but is now at only 1.11 (as of 17/12/2018). (Pound Sterling Live)
10. Brits will have to pay €7 to go on holiday in the EU Schengen Area. The European Union has announced that Brits will have to pay €7 for a Visa waiver in order to travel there. (Sky News, 14 December 2018)
11. Women would be drowned out in the Brexit debate in Parliament. Men have done 90% of the talking in the three main Brexit debates in Parliament. (Huffington Post, 11 October 2018)
12. That customs plans could lead to smuggling. Different tariff regimes in the EU and the UK would open up £1 bn worth of smuggling opportunities for organised criminals. (Independent, 27 July 2018)
13. Holidays could become £200 more expensive after Brexit. Rising flight costs, hotel prices and the exchange rate would mean that holidays to Europea would cost over £200 more on average. (Daily Mirror, 4 August 2018)
14. A trade deal with Trump could mean rat hairs in our food. In order to trade food with the US in a free trade agreement, Britain could have to lower its standards to the American ones, which allow rat hair and maggots in food until a certain amount (Business Insider, 9 October 2018)
15. That thousands of EU nurses would leave the NHS. Brexit could mean over 4,000 EU nurses would leave the NHS (The Mirror, 15 July 2018)
16. That Brexit would lead to a snap election. This means there is now no majority for any Brexit deal in Parliament and the process is gridlocked.
17. Young people could lose access to the Erasmus study abroad programme. This scheme, enabling thousands of young people in the UK to study and gain work experience in other EU countries each year, could be lost after Brexit, potentially robbing young people of new opportunities. The Government has been unable to guarantee continued access on current terms.
18. Brexit could delay response times for fire services. Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue revealed, in response to an FOI request, that Brexit was “critical” risk, and could result in “reduced operational cover” and “delays in responding to operational incidents”, the report said. (BBC News, 3 October, 2018)
19. UK museums would face new costs and may have to temporarily shut altogether. Museums from the V&A to the Natural History Museum have warned that Brexit would mean extra costs and burdens that would make it harder for them to operate (Evening Standard, 31 October 2018)
20. That Whitehall departments would have to spend millions of Pounds of taxpayers’ money to make up for shortfalls in staffing and expertise. The Government is spending up to £40 million on external consultants to help with their Brexit plans (Buzzfeed, 23 October 2018)
21. That after two years of negotiation, we would merely have agreed the terms of our withdrawal, and details about the future relationship would still be up in the air. What was originally billed as an implementation period has now become another period of negotiations with the EU.
22. That a Brexiter would raise the possibility of food shortages in Ireland to influence the negotiations. Priti Patel said that shortages could be used as leverage against Ireland in the negotiations (BBC News, 7 December 2018)
23. There will be fewer workers in the social care sector after leaving the EU. This could cost women over £315m a year in lost earnings as they are forced to give up work to fill this gap. (Independent, 20 October 2018)
24. Access to the vital Schengen Information System II could be lost. The Home Secretary has said that he cannot guarantee access to this information sharing system, used over 500,000 times each year by UK police forces.
25. Brexiters say that the outcome of Brexit might be worse than staying in. Nigel Farage, among others who campaigned for Leave, have since said that the Brexit outcome will be worse than remaining in the EU (ITV, 15 June 2018).
26. That 500 jobs would be lost at Schaeffler. The German firm said Brexit was a factor in its decision to close two of its plants in the UK this year. (Sky News, 6 November 2018)
27. That the UK’s credit rating would be downgraded. Moody’s downgraded the UK’s credit rating in September 2017 because of Brexit. (BBC News, 23 September 2017)
28. That 100 jobs would be lost at Nomura. Nomura announced last summer that it was setting up a subsidiary in Frankfurt to carry out trading operations, with around 100 people expected to move out of London. (HITC, August 2018)
29. 200 jobs would be lost at Bank of America. The bank has already moved 200 jobs from London to Paris to prepare for Brexit (Citywire, 6 August 2018)
30. That there would be a Secretary of State for Trade racking up 240,000 air miles around the world without delivering a single trade deal. Liam Fox made 35 trips around the world, failing to secure a trade agreement with even one country he has visited (The Mirror, 17 April 2017)
31. That the European Medicines Agency would move out of the UK. The EU decided that the EMA would move to Amsterdam because of Brexit, costing the UK jobs and regulatory influence that came with the body (EMA, 14 December 2018)
32. 50 jobs would be lost at Barclays. The bank will move investment banking jobs to Frankfurt as a result of Brexit (The Guardian, 2 July 2018)
33. That 500 jobs would be lost at Morgan Stanley. The firm moved its European investment banking division to Ireland because of Brexit, impacting jobs in London (Citywire, 13 June 2018)
34. That two years on from the referendum, the Prime Minister can still not say that Brexit will make Britain better off. When challenged, Theresa May has on multiple occasions been unable to say that she thinks Brexit will be good for Britain.
35. That 40 jobs would be lost at Navfor, the EU piracy task force. The UK will lose command of the EU naval task force - set up to combat piracy off the coast of Somalia - as it exits the European Union. The headquarters - currently in Northwood, north London - will move to Rota in Spain, with some operations heading to Brest, in France. (BBC News, 30 July 2018).
36. 90 jobs would be lost at Wrightbus. The bus manufacturing company from Ballymena blamed Brexit for its decisions to cut jobs (Irish News, 6 June 2018)
37. That far-right leaders across Europe would be celebrating Brexit. Extreme right-wing politicians such as France’s Marine LePen, the Netherlands’ Geert Wilders, and British extremists like Tommy Robinson celebrated the Brexit vote as a victory for their politics.
38. Civil servants in DExEU would be raking in £750,000. Despite abysmal progress in Brexit talks and planning, Whitehall mandarins were rewarded with three quarters of a million in bonuses for 2017 (Daily Mail, 19 August 2018)
39. Football clubs would have to pay more for transfers. The drop in the value of Sterling has meant that Premier League clubs had to foot an extra £88 million for transfers. (Sky News, 9 August 2018)
40. That 100 jobs would be lost at the Discovery Channel. The channel shut down its European hub in London, and is mulling a move to Poland or the Netherlands after Brexit (The Guardian, 28 May 2018)
41. That 70 jobs would be lost at Fruit of the Loom. The company plans to close its UK presence in Telford to relocate to continental Europe or Africa after Brexit (BBC News, 22 May 2018)
42. That hedge funds and financial speculators would profit from Brexit while the country is left worse off. The market turmoil created by Brexit has meant that those shorting the Pound and betting against the British economy have profited. Hedge fund manager and Leave donor Crispin Odey said of recent Brexit market volatility: “it’s been a good day for me” (The Times, 16 November 2018)
43. That 1000 jobs would be lost at Bet365. Bet365 – one of the world’s leading online gambling groups – has finalised plans to relocate its operations to Malta from Gibraltar as soon as the UK exits the European Union next year, The Sunday Times of Malta revealed. (Times of Malta, May 20 2018)
44. That 100 jobs would be lost at Aim Hire. A Teddington recruitment company has said it will move to Ireland to ‘ensure its survival’ post Brexit. (Richmond and Twickenham Times, 15 May 2018)
45. That the European Banking Authority would be lost. The EU decided that the EBA would move to Paris because of Brexit, costing the UK jobs and regulatory influence that came with the body (Financial Times, 20 November 2017)
46. That 1,000 jobs would be lost at Jaguar Land Rover. JLR has already axed 1,000 as a result of Brexit at its Castle Bromwich factory (Birmingham Mail, 17 September 2018)
47. 65 jobs would be lost at Northwood Hygiene Products. The hygiene products firm blamed Brexit and the associated decline in the value of Sterling for the closure of its Meltham Mills site (Examiner, 12 April 2018)
48. 1000 jobs would be lost at JP Morgan. The bank has plans to move jobs outside of Britain as a result of Brexit due to a divergence in rules and regulations between the UK and the EU (Reuters, 25 January 2018)
49. That it would take the Brexit Secretary two years to understand the importance of the Calais-Dover crossing for UK trade. Dominic Raab said that he “hadn’t quite understood” how reliant UK trade in goods is on the Dover-Calais crossing (BBC News, 8 November 2018)
50. That 70 jobs would be lost at Severfield. The company cited uncertainty over new contracts as a result of Brexit as a deciding factor in its decision (Construction Enquirer, February 2018)
51. Access to the vital ECRIS system could be lost. The Home Secretary has said that he cannot guarantee access to this information sharing system, used almost 100,000 times each year by UK police forces.
52. That 2335 jobs would be lost at Maplin. The company cited Brexit as a reason for them going into administration (Express and Star, 28 February 2018)
53. That 300 jobs would be lost at RyanAir at Glasgow Airport. The airline slashed its presence in Scotland as a result of Brexit (Sky News, 28 February 2018).
54. The UK would be shut out of the EU’s Galileo satellite programme. As part of Brexit, the UK is set to lose its key role in the Galileo programme which develops satellite technology to succeed the GPS system (BBC News, 28 August 2018).
55. 250 jobs would be lost at Credit Suisse. As part of its Brexit planning, Credit Suisse moved 250 jobs out of London in February. (BBC News, 26 February 2018)
56. That 100 jobs would be lost at the Galileo Surveillance Centre. A key satellite monitoring centre has been moved from the UK to Spain to ensure it remains in an EU country. (The Guardian, 18 January 2018).
57. 547 jobs would be lost at Multiyork. The company blamed tougher trading conditions as a result of Brexit for the job losses (Sky News, 23 November 2017)
58. 80 jobs would be lost at Lush. The cosmetics company chose to offer staff a move to Germany due to a lack of clarity from the Government over Brexit (The Guardian, 13 March 2017)
59. 500 jobs would be lost at Cummins Generator Technologies. The company blamed Brexit for its decision to close its manufacturing plant in Stamford (BBC News, 5 October 2017)
60. 1858 jobs would be lost at Monarch Airlines. The airline said that Brexit uncertainty is partly to blame for its collapse (BBC News, 2 October 2017)
61. Universities and SMEs could lose out on research and development funding worth billions of Pounds. Under the Horizon 2020 programme, UK universities and small and medium sized businesses currently benefit for billions in funding for research programmes. The Government has so far failed to guarantee access to this funding, and the UK might get relegated to the status of a third country in this scheme after Brexit.
62. 50 jobs would be lost at Credit Agricole. The company announced a shift of jobs from London to Paris as a result of Brexit (eFinancialCareers, 21 September 2017).
63. That 480 jobs would be lost at Mitie. The restructuring of Mitie is as a result of profit warnings that the company has blamed on Brexit uncertainty (The Guardian, 21 September 2017)
64. Britain will be frozen out of dozens of rules determined by the EU during transition without a say. Rules covering areas such as road signs, budgets, and drinking water will apply to the UK, but no British voice will be heard in making them (The Independent, 20 November 2018)
65. 260 jobs would be lost at Southern Salads. Family-run Southern Salads, based in Tonbridge, Kent, said the fall in the pound’s value since last June’s referendum vote had been too much for the company to bear. (Independent, 17 August 2017)
66. 1000 jobs would be lost at Wilko. Rising import costs after the Brexit vote cost thousands of jobs at Wilko in 2017. (Retail Gazette, 27 October 2017)
67. That 100 jobs would be lost at Foster and Partners. Britain’s largest architectural firm, Foster + Partners, laid off nearly 100 people, and blamed the uncertainty around construction projects caused by the Brexit vote.(The Guardian, 24 April 2017)
68. That up to 1000 jobs would be lost at HSBC. HSBC in 2018 started transferring some of its London offices to Paris, saying up to a thousand jobs could move there. (Reuters, 8 Augst 2018)
69. Britain would lose its voice, vote, and veto in the EU, but have to accept EU rules. As a result of Brexit, Britain will no longer be represented in the European Commission, Council of the EU, and European Parliament. However, under the Government’s Brexit plan, the common rulebook will mean that the UK will still have to abide by rules decided in these institutions.
70. 1015 jobs would be lost at Tesco. Rising inflation, due to Brexit, was a factor in Tesco axing over a thousand jobs in 2017. (BBC News, 9 January 2017)
71. 120 jobs would be lost at Jamie’s Italian. Jamie Oliver said Brexit was one of the factor’s in a perfect storm that forced hs restaurant chain to lay off workers. (Express, 31 August 2018)
72. 251 jobs would be lost at Hewden. In 2016 administrators were called into plant hire group Hewden, which blamed uncertainty caused by Brexit for its financial predicament. (The Guardian, 22 November 2016)
73. That the Government would make no progress rolling over new free trade agreements. Two years after the vote, despite David Davis’ promise to negotiate a free trade area larger than the European Union, the Government has had no firm commitment or legally binding assurance that any of our current free trade arrangements will be rolled over after Brexit.
74. That 123 jobs would be lost at Rivington Biscuits. The makers of Pink Wafers went into administration following the sharp fall in the value of the pound after the Brexit vote, costing more than a hundred jobs. (BBC News, 15 December 2016)
75. That British businesses would face new barriers and costs to doing business. Britain leaving the EU’s Single Market and Customs Union means that instead of having unfettered access to European markets, businesses will face new costs, and have to apply for new permits and licences to trade with the EU.
76. The National Farmers Union would warn of food rotting in the fields. Fruit and vegetable farms across the UK were left short of thousands of migrant workers in 2017, leaving some produce to rot in the fields and farmers suffering big losses. (The Guardian, 9 February 2018)
77. The Government would warn people not to plan holidays after March 2019. Families will be advised not to book holidays after next March, according to contingency plans being drawn up to prepare for a no-deal Brexit. (The Times, December 16 2018)
78. The NHS would have to pay £900 million a year more for medicines. The fall in the value of the pound has added millions of pounds to the NHS bill for imported medicines. (Health Service Journal, 4 July 2016)
79. The NHS would have to spend an extra £490 million a year on staff visas. According to the Royal College of Physicians analysis, changes to immigrations rules after Brexit could leave the NHS facing addition recruitment costs of nearly half a billion pounds a year (Royal College of Physicians, 5 September 2018).
80. Extra inflation would cost each worker £448 a year. (London School of Economics, November 2017)
81. Brexit would cost the Treasury more than £5 billion a year in debt interest payments. Brexit has mean higher interest rates on government bonds, meaning we have to spend more servicing our national debt. (Evening Standard, 2 October 2018)
82. The UK would become a “third country” in relation to clinical trials and trials of medical devices, losing access to key databases. (Baker Mckenzie, 24 September 2018).
83. Two Brexit secretaries would resign during the negotiations. Both David Davis and Dominic Raab resigned their posts and blamed others for negotiations they conducted themselves.
84. Leading Brexiters would shift their money out of the UK to avoid the economic damage. Jacob Rees-Mogg has opened a new fund for his investment management company in the Republic of Ireland (The Guardian, 22 July 2018), and John Redwood has advised investors to seek opportunities outside Britain after Brexit (Financial Times, 3 November 2017).
85. Leading Brexiters would apply for EU residency or passports. Nigel Lawson raised eyebrows when he revealed he has applied for French residency (Independent, 31 May 2018) while Andrew Bridgen, the Brexiteer MP suggested that any English person could apply for an Irish passport (Independent, 16 October 2018).
86. That polls would consistently show that more people would now rather remain in the EU than leave. (What UK Thinks)
87. That we would lose access to the European Investment Bank. The UK will exit the EIB, which currently provides millions in loads for infrastructure developments across the UK (Financial Times, 17 July 2018).
88. Energy companies would warn that utility bills would become more expensive. Brexit could drive up energy bills, power companies have said, because trade barriers threaten to increase the cost of importing gas and electricity across the Channel. (The Guardian, 4 September 2018)
89. That there would be a spike in hate crime after the referendum. The Home Office noted “spikes in hate crime following certain events such as the EU referendum and the terrorist attacks in 2017”. (The Guardian, 16 October 2018)
90. That those who campaigned for Brexit would jump ship and blame others for the mess they created. Boris Johnson, David Davis, Dominic Raab, and Steve Baker all refuse to take responsibility for the mess they created, resigned from the Government and are now blaming others for the Brexit mess.
91. That some countries would try to block the UK in the WTO. Several countries have tried to prevent Britain from gaining fast-track access to the World Trade Organisation trade deals. (Independent, 27 October 2018)
92. That the relationship with the EU on fisheries is set to be largely the same as before. It has been reported that the European Commission emphasises that a fisheries agreement that builds on “existing reciprocal access and quota shares” is a matter of priority (BBC News, 25 November 2018)
93. That leaving the EU also means leaving Euratom. This is a completely unnecessary step that stems from the Government’s red line on ECJ jurisdiction that has already been broken. Leaving Euratom raises question over the governance and safety of radioactive substances between the UK and the EU after Brexit.
94. That roaming charges could return when you go abroad. EU regulations have recently abolished roaming charges within EU member states, but after Brexit UK phone providers could be free to charge extra fees for phone calls, texts, and data usage abroad for Brits.
95. That the planned new blue UK passports would be made in… France. The passports are to be manufactured by Franco-Dutch company Gemalto (BBC News, 22 March 2018)
96. That Nigel Farage would say the key promise of £350 million for the NHS was a ‘mistake’ just an hour after the vote. Just an hour after the Leave vote was announced, Farage said that the money cannot be guaranteed, and claimed he never promised it (The Telegraph, 24 June 2016)
97. That British expats living in the EU would lose rights. As a consequence of ending free movement, UK citizens living elsewhere in the EU will lose many rights such as the automatic right to work and study, and equal access to public services in many countries.
98. That Gibraltar would not be party to future UK trade deals without the permission of Spain. “After the United Kingdom leaves the union, Gibraltar will not be included in the territorial scope of the agreements to be concluded between the union and the United Kingdom,” the EU has said. (The Guardian, 24 November 2018).
99. That the UK would lose its say in agreeing economic sanctions on states like Russia and North Korea. The UK losing its say in the European Council, and exiting the Single Market bloc means that we will no longer benefit from the enormous influence of setting sanctions as the world’s largest single economic bloc as a political pressure tool.
100. That a British Prime Minister would be excluded from the EU leaders’ dinner at the European Council, the highest level of decision-making in Europe. Theresa May was locked out of the leaders’ dinner in Brussels in December 2016 (The Guardian, 12 December 2016)
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