Car makers warn of Brexit and Covid ‘double whammy’

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PA Media

UK and European automotive makers have warned a no-deal Brexit might put a £100bn dent within the Continent’s automotive trade within the subsequent 5 years, including to heavy losses already brought on by Covid-19.

A letter signed by 23 commerce teams throughout Europe urges the federal government to make a deal fairly than default to World Trade Organisation (WTO) guidelines.

It says with out one there can be a “catastrophic” rise in tariffs.

The trade has already taken a £90bn hit this yr because of Covid-19, it provides.

The UK left the European Union on 31 December however will take pleasure in tariff-free commerce with the bloc till the tip of the yr as a part of the transition interval.

But fears are rising that either side can be unable to strike a longer-term commerce deal by then.

The European Automobile Manufacturers Association (ACEA), which penned the letter, stated that securing a commerce settlement by January was an absolute “should” for corporations on either side of the Channel.

“Otherwise our sector – already reeling from the Covid disaster – can be hit exhausting by a double whammy,” stated director basic Eric-Mark Huitema.

‘Bleak’

Mike Hawes, head of the UK Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), stated a commerce deal was essential as a result of the UK and EU industries have been so built-in.

“These figures paint a bleak image of the devastation that may comply with a ‘no deal’ Brexit,” he stated.

“The shock of tariffs and different commerce obstacles would compound the harm already dealt by a worldwide pandemic and recession, placing companies and livelihoods in danger.”

Industry associations on the continent, together with from Germany, France, Ireland, the Netherlands, Belgium, Sweden, Denmark, Italy, Portugal and Eastern Europe additionally say they concern job losses in their very own nations.

Under WTO phrases, automobiles exports would face a 10% tariff, rising to 22% for vans and vans.

This would hit automotive makers’ margins and tariff will increase could be handed on to shoppers, impacting demand. Automotive suppliers and their merchandise could be affected too.

The SMMT stated it might result in £49bn of misplaced enterprise for UK automotive vegetation and £52bn for these throughout the EU by 2025.

It referred to as for a free commerce deal that may additionally apply to alternatively fuelled automobiles and automotive parts and “contain zero tariffs or quotas”.

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