A no-deal Brexit will be “devastating and destructive” for the Welsh economy, Wales’ Brexit Minister has warned.
Jeremy Miles’ comments come following the publication of Operation Yellowhammer – a secret Whitehall document that outlines the disruption the UK could face in the event of the UK leaving the EU without a deal.
The five-page document, which is said to be the Government’s “reasonable worst case planning assessments” of a no-deal exit which were released at the demand of MPs showed that major hold-ups at channel ports could occur, along with “significant” electricity price rises and a return to a hard border in Northern Ireland.
Following the release, Mr Miles said the documents show that “no-deal must be taken off the table.”
He said the Welsh Government have had “less involvement” in negotiations since Boris Johnson entered No.10.
“We call on the UK Government to immediately step up engagement with us on preparations – worryingly we have had less involvement with the Johnson government than under his predecessor”, he said.
He added, “Yellowhammer shows how profoundly reckless it was to prorogue and we support the urgent recall of UK Parliament at this time of national crisis.”
- Analysis by ITV Wales’ Brexit Correspondent Carole Green:
The government’s analysis indicated they expect the poorest families to be disproportionately hit the hardest.
This is potentially worrying news in Wales where many families live in low-income households.
Delays at the borders could see food prices of fresh fruit veg go up – that will be exacerbated by the time of the year. Autumn and Winter is a time when we begin to import more of our fresh food as home-grown produce slows down.
It is estimated one in three children in Wales currently live in poverty. Those families won’t want any extra financial burdens that a no-deal Brexit may bring.
Of course, this doesn’t mean to say these things will happen – what Operation Yellowhammer is is the government’s predictions in a worst-case scenario.
This advice is expected to be updated by the UK Government in the coming days following its no-deal contingency planning.
Wales voted to leave but those campaigning to stay in the EU argue that no-one voted to be poorer.