UK Chancellor of the Exchequer Sajid Javid has warned national firms that there will not be any “alignment” with the European Union following Britain’s departure from the bloc on 31 January despite calls from business leaders, insisting that companies had three years to prepare for the new economic reality.
“There will not be alignment, we will not be a rule-taker, we will not be in the single market and we will not be in the customs union - and we will do this by the end of the year”, Javid told the Financial Times referring to the next 11 months of trade negotiations with the remaining 27 members of the EU.
“Once we’ve got this agreement in place with our European friends, we will continue to be one of the most successful economies on Earth”, the treasury chief added.
Speaking to FT, Javid also insisted that while some UK companies could indeed lose from Brexit, he was okay with this, signaling the need for businesses to “adjust” to the new trading relations.
“There will be an impact on business one way or the other, some will benefit, some won’t”, the chancellor concluded.
The treasury chief’s remarks are set to spark even more worries among British businesses, including large manufacturing sectors, especially in automobiles and food production, which now fear that the absence of close arrangements with the EU will only result in the introduction of new checks and higher prices.
“It will mean businesses will have to adjust to costly new checks, processes, and procedures that will act as a barrier to friction-less trade with the EU and may well result in price rises”, Food and Drink Federation chief Tim Rycroft said following Javid’s interview, as quoted by AP.
While the EU earlier suggested that London could benefit from zero tariff trade with the bloc in exchange for staying tied to European regulations, Boris Johnson threw aside this option, signaling a need to completely break from Brussels’ legislation.