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Let’s do our best to protect economy and help vulnerable

Readers' letters | Published:

I recently re-read the letter from the Tory MP for Shrewsbury, Daniel Kawczynski, trying to show that the impending economic disaster of Brexit can be turned into a glorious success.

The disaster is well shown by the £80bn hit as forecast by Philip Hammond (and the majority of economists) or the 10 per cent fall in incomes as described by Bill McMaster (Shropshire Star, June). So let us examine the claims of Mr Kawczynski.

I accept that the percentage of our trade with the EU has fallen by from 54 per cent in 2006 to 44 per cent now. However that is still worth £241bn (our EU budget contribution was £8bn in comparison) and Brexit (especially no deal) will blow a big hole in this. Mr Kawczynski thinks this can be filled with non EU trade and quotes a puzzling figure of 74 per cent increase in non EU trade.

It’s puzzling since the EU trade went from 54 per cent to 44 per cent so the non EU trade must have gone from 46 per cent to 56 per cent which is a 22 per cent increase by my maths.

Anyway, whatever the figure, this increase was achieved via trade deals made by the EU – 92 per cent of UK trade is with 50 countries of which 41 have trade deals with the EU.

Boris Johnson has referred to the countries with which the UK has had the biggest growth in trade, one of which was South Korea which grew from £3bn in 2010 to £6bn in 2016 so it will require about 40 of such trade deals to cover the Brexit hole.

As a result of Brexit since 2016:

  • We are growing slower than almost all EU countries and have fallen to sixth in the world economies behind France who are now fifth
  • Sterling is devalued by 20 per cent
  • Cost of living index has gone from 0.7 to 2.7

I believe that we should stay in the EU but accept the referendum vote which was to leave the EU but not the Customs Union and Single Market. Staying in both will protect our economy for the future of our children and those most vulnerable in our society.

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Mal Chadwick, Horsehay

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