As a No Deal Brexit approaches, European business and industry are growing increasingly anxious. As Leavers pointed out during the referendum, they sell us more than we sell them.
The Head of the German Federation Industry (BDI), Dieter Lempf, has said: “A chaotic Brexit is now in dangerous proximity. Companies are looking into the abyss these weeks.
“Leaving the UK without an agreement is not an option – neither for British companies nor for companies on the continent.”
He added that: “Companies are simply not capable of implementing overnight changes at the end of a long political process. The economy on both sides of the English Channel has no choice but to make all the arrangements for the hard Brexit.”
The German auto industry are also growing nervous of a potential WTO Brexit as are the German Chambers of Commerce and Industry (DIHK), with their chief Eric Schweitzer saying: “We must be clear what this is all about. More than 750,000 jobs in Germany depend on exports to Great Britain. Just-in-time production and supply chains are at risk.”
Meanwhile BMW have said: “Uncertainty is not good for business…we must therefore continue to prepare for the worst-case scenario, which is what a No Deal Brexit would represent.
“We strongly urge all relevant stakeholders to do everything possible in order to establish much needed certainty for our business and to maintain the truly frictionless trade on which our international production network is based.”
This shows once again why it is in the EU’s interest to come back to the table and renegotiate, requiring the British government to be tougher and demand that significant changes are made for any deal to go ahead. Given the EU is so dominated by Germany, Angela Merkel has the power to insist on changes that secure a deal including on the hated backstop.