The Sun: Theresa May blames civil servants for leaked Brexit report and says Britain will seek ‘bespoke deal’ to avoid economic hit

A Brexit impact assessment claims Britain will suffer in every scenario when Britain leaves the European Union – but that a US trade deal will boost growth

THERESA May has blamed civil servants for leaking the unapproved Brexit analysis and stressed we can avoid an economic hit by getting our own bespoke deal.

The Prime Minister told Cabinet this morning that a report claiming Britain will be worse off after leaving the EU was “initial work not approved by ministers”.

Leavers lashed out at the “speculative” reports today, said they were based on “opinion not fact” and should be ignored.

A Brexit impact assessment shown to Buzzfeed claimed every sector would be hit while looking at three scenarios when Britain leaves the bloc.

But as Mrs May said today, it doesn’t even factor in a bespoke trade deal like the one she wants us to get.

A spokesman for the PM said: “The PM said this was initial work, not approved by ministers, which only considers off the shelf scenarios. No analysis was made of the bespoke arrangement we seek as a matter of government policy – as set out in the Florence speech.”

The report suggested UK growth would be 5 per cent lower over the next 15 years compared to current forecasts under a comprehensive free trade agreement with the EU.

The “no deal” scenario could reduce growth by 8 per cent over that same time frame – and even a so-called soft Brexit could hurt the UK’s economy.

But trade deals with other non-EU countries and blocs, such as China, India, Australia, the Gulf countries, and the nations of Southeast Asia would add a further 0.1% to 0.4% to GDP over the long term – which we will finally be able to sign up to once we leave.

And the assessments also said that getting a trade deal with the US was a definite – boosting growth by around 0.2 per cent in the long term.

Brexit minister Steve Baker said today the report was “an attempt to undermine our exit from the EU” and was “not anywhere near being approved by ministers”.

[…]

Britain’s economy could enjoy a Brexit boost worth £135billion a year, according to a glowing assessment by a group of 16 leading economists, which was released last year.

National output will rise as we become an international trading nation – raising living standards, creating better-paid jobs and cutting unemployment.

Economists said there is mounting evidence that quitting Europe’s trade barriers will transform our prospects over the next decade.

We would also reap savings from cutting immigration, slashing EU red tape and halting contributions to Brussels.

Professor Patrick Minford, who helped draft the report, argued it is time to abandon the gloomy forecasts and embrace the new prosperity on the horizon.

He declared: “Project Fear failed yet many Remainers are trying to resurrect it.

“The government should embrace a clean, swift Brexit – avoid the uncertainty of a long, drawn out transition and embrace the opportunities of Brexit.”

To read The Sun’s report in full, click here.

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