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Leaving the EU: Economic Forecasts

Volume 653: debated on Tuesday 29 January 2019

11. What discussions he has had with the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union on the Bank of England’s forecasts for the economy after the UK leaves the EU. (908874)

On 28 November, the Bank of England published analysis on how the short-term impact of leaving the EU could affect the Bank’s ability to meet its objectives for monetary and financial stability. That analysis is published independently and reported to Parliament, but in line with normal practice, no comment will be made on discussions between Ministers.

The Bank of England knows that no deal will be a disaster, and so do Ministers and the Chancellor, yet the Prime Minister is whipping her MPs to vote today for an amendment that will make it more likely. What does that say about the Chancellor? Does the continued presence of no deal on the table speak to his lack of influence, his lack of authority or his lack of courage?

I very much regret the hon. Gentleman’s tone. As he knows, the reality is that the best way of avoiding a no-deal scenario is to get behind the Prime Minister’s deal and vote for it.

I was contacted this week by a constituent who runs a business in Derry/Londonderry. He writes:

“The official position is that”

the recent bomb attack

“is nothing to do with Brexit; everyone I’ve spoken to finds this laughable—it is everything to do with Brexit. The danger, irresponsibility and absurdity really comes home to you when the bomb disposal Land Rovers are screaming past our office.”

What does the Chancellor think the implications of Brexit will be for jobs in Northern Ireland, when local employers feel like this?

I very much recognise the risks associated with no deal. That is why the Government are very clear, as the Prime Minister will set out shortly, about the imperative for the House to come behind the deal and vote for it.