Friday, 22 June 2018

Brexit seer's prophesies coming to pass

Doyen of Brexit economists, Patrick Minford, wrote in The Sun in 2016 "Over time, if we left the EU, it seems likely that we would mostly eliminate manufacturing, [my emphasis - FHL] leaving mainly industries such as design, marketing and hi-tech. But this shouldn’t scare us.

"Around half of young adults now go to university, ending up in professions such as finance or law, while the making of things such as car parts or carpentry has hugely shrunk — but there will always be jobs for people without sophisticated skills."

Professor Minford is not only the most qualified of the people behind the Brexit movement, it seems he is the only one prepared to tell it straight. Today, after months of discreet lobbying of Mrs May's government, Airbus finally lost patience and went public with its reluctance to invest further in the UK if the company were unable to move components between its factories here and on the continent as easily as it has done hitherto.

This does not mean that Airbus workers in Broughton would all be sacked in March 2019 in the event of a bad trade agreement between Mrs May and the EU 27. Clearly, a sophisticated wing manufacturing operation cannot be moved overnight. But it does mean that Airbus will set up wing-building for its next generation of aircraft on the continent, presumably in Poland where there is skilled labour and costs are lower than in the EU heartland. Therefore, no new jobs will be created and the old ones will be phased out as the current production lines end.

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