No-deal Brexit ‘low risk’ for Lincolnshire’s businesses, says council chief

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A no-deal Brexit would be “low risk” for Lincolnshire’s businesses, according to the county’s economy chief.

Lincolnshire county councillor Colin Davie, executive member for economy and place, said the region is “well prepared” should Britain leave the European Union without a deal next Friday.

The UK will leave the EU by automatic operation of law on March 29, 2019, with or without a withdrawal agreement.

Prime Minister Theresa May has asked for an extension from the European Council to delay Brexit until June 30.

But Councillor Davie said that businesses in the county are prepared for the impact of an exit on World Trade Organisation terms.

“We consider that the impact for Lincolnshire are low risk,” he said.

“We believe we are as well prepared as we can be and we believe the impact of a World Trade Organisation exit will be minimal.”

However, he added that some will find hardship in such an exit.

“I’m not saying that some will not find hardship, they will,” he said.

“But we are here to help them through that process and I am clear that the government needs to make a decision on what it is doing.”

Councillor Davie said uncertainty and “nastiness” in Westminster was “causing harm” and that MPs need to make a decision.

The position is in stark contrast with the Conservative MP for Grantham, Nick Boles, who recently quit his local Conservative association over his views on a no-deal Brexit.

Mr Boles described the scenario as being “disastrously bad” for his constituency. 

Prime Minister Theresa May recently sought an extension to Article 50 after failing to push her withdrawal deal through the House of Commons.

MPs have already turned down Mrs May’s deal twice.

The Prime Minister has asked for a short extension to the UK’s exit until June 30, but such a delay would need to be agreed by all 27 members of the EU.