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Analysis

Warnings of no-deal chaos keep flooding in

by Luke Lythgoe | 07.08.2018

What would a no-deal Brexit mean for people and businesses across the UK? The government has promised to tell us sometime around August 20, with a series of “technical notices”.

By that point they might not need to. The traditional “silly season” for the media has been replaced by an increasingly urgent drumbeat of announcements about the chaos that failure to agree any Brexit deal is set to unleash. Below is a timeline of who’s said what about how no-deal will affect them.

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Government’s secret ‘Doomsday’ analysis (June 3)

Government secret analysis leaks to the Sunday Times. It predicts supermarkets in Cornwall and Scotland running out of food within a couple of days, hospitals running out of medicines within two weeks and the Port of Dover collapsing on day one. And that was only the second-worst scenario.

Airbus is ready to leave (June 22)

Aerospace giant warns it could leave the UK if there’s no Brexit transition deal. Airbus employs 14,000 people at 25 sites in the UK – around half in Wales.

NHS stockpiling drugs (July 24)

The NHS is accelerating plans to stockpile medicines and blood products, new health secretary Matt Hancock admits.

‘Reassurance and comfort’ (July 25)

Theresa May says people should take “reassurance and comfort” from the no-deal preparations her government is making – while refusing to tell Channel 5 News whether that includes stockpiling medicines and blood products.

Send in the Army (July 29)

Plans to send in the Army to deliver food, medicines and fuel in the event of no-deal shortages are being drawn up by ministers, the Sunday Times reported.

M20 turned into lorry park (July 31)

M20 could become a giant lorry park for many years if there’s no deal, an impact assessment by Dover district council reported. A 13-mile stretch of the coastbound section of the M20 has been earmarked to hold 2,000 lorries as a “temporary solution”.

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Pharma firms stockpiling drugs (August 1)

Drug-makers Sanofi and Novartis say they are drawing up plans to stockpile life-saving medicines, and securing additional warehouse space.

Local councils’ fear the worst (August 3)

No-deal fears of local councils are being compounded by a “lack of detail” from government, a Sky News investigation reveals. Local-level preparations include: Bristol wary of “social unrest”; Pembrokeshire’s only “positive” Brexit impact is that people might move away, reducing pressure on services; Shetland fears for local farms; East Sussex concerned about the provision of social care.

Bombardier faces £30m extra cost (August 6)

If there is no deal, the Northern Ireland based aerospace firm would have to implement a plan to stockpile parts, costing it £25-30 million, or “cash that I don’t have”, as Bombardier’s UK chief put it. The business employs 4,000 people in Belfast.

British sandwiches under threat (August 6)

No-deal trade disruption threatens the UK sandwich industry, warns the British Sandwich Association. We purchase 4 billion a year from supermarkets. But it’s a sector based on fresh, imported ingredients with a short shelf life.

Food shortages within the year (August 7)

The National Farmers Union has warned that if the UK was cut off from food suppliers in the EU, forcing us to be self-sufficient, then the country would start running out of food next August.

Poles in the UK demand protection (August 7)

The Federation of Poles in Great Britain feels “compelled to appeal” to Theresa May to ringfence their legal rights in the event of no-deal, reporting “developing uneasiness” among the Polish diaspora, especially parents.

Edited by Quentin Peel

3 Responses to “Warnings of no-deal chaos keep flooding in”

  • Funny how up to now social unrest around Brexit was usually thought to come from the brexiteer side. Obviously, in case of a crash-out Brexit there will be plenty very angry remain voters who will refuse to just go home and have a good cry as well. Be Prepared, I would say.

  • We should not fall into the trap of saying the sky will fall in on day one of no deal. That enables Leavers to call it Project Fear mk II or compare it to the millennium bug scare. There may well be temporary botched up arrangements put in place to deal with the immediate shock. The real damage will start to emerge in the following few weeks as temporary solutions start to unravel. Just as the economic damage from the referendum took time to be seen. We don’t want to loose the argument twice

  • No mention of the 250,000 or so peripatetic and cross-border commuting Brits, relying heavily on FoM, who stand to lose their livelihoods on Mar31st 2019.

    But the British press cares not one whit about the Brits in the EU. There’s just a deafening silence.