No-deal Brexit: Nearly third of 'most critical' preparations behind schedule, UK government admits
Nearly one-third of the “most critical” preparations for a no-deal Brexit are behind schedule, according to newly released government papers on the implications of a disorderly exit from the EU.
The documents – published on Tuesday after demands from MPs – also say that UK citizens are not preparing for a no-deal scenario as it is not viewed as a “sufficiently credible” outcome by the public.
Reporting analysis supplied to the cabinet, the documents add that leaving the bloc without a deal could leave the UK economy between 6.3 and 9 per cent smaller after 15 years than it would otherwise have been.
Critically, the government papers state: “Notwithstanding the very significant efforts to prepare for a no-deal scenario, the latest internal government-wide delivery reporting reveals the scale of risk remaining in the limited time available.
“In February, departments reported being on track for just under 85 per cent of no-deal projects but, within that, on track for just over two-thirds of the most critical projects.”
The papers claimed that the introduction of tariffs and non-tariff barriers to trade in the case of a no-deal Brexit can be expected to have a “very severe” impact on some UK industries.
And around 240,000 UK companies which trade only with the EU would be caught up in the customs processes, with a total administrative burden on business from customs declarations of around £13bn a year.
In regards to the public, the papers claim: “Evidence suggests that individual citizens are also not preparing for the effects that they would feel in a no-deal scenario.