French President, Emmanuel Macron, has been warned by French business that holding up an agreement, which could lead to a no deal scenario, would harm the country. Business industry leaders have suggested that allowing the UK to crash out of the EU would present a ‘major threat’ to the economy.
This timing is opportune as Theresa May meets with her Brexit ‘War Cabinet’ today amid rumours that her DUP allies could withdraw support for the Government in protest of the EU negotiations that have taken place. The chairman of the regional council – Herve Morin – and ten other leading business figures have penned a public letter offering their advice to Macron. They have forewarned that attempting to use a no deal Brexit as a means to relocate financial trade away from London could harm other areas of the French economy.
The letter, which included the support of ferry and port operators, stated “’Financiers tend to see it as an opportunity for economic expansion, a view shared by much of Mr Macron’s administration, while a range of other sectors, from wine exporters to ferry lines, see it as a danger. France has started to dream,” it continued. “It is dreaming of Brexit as though it were an opportunity, notably for the financial sector in Paris…but for the regions next to the channel, and notably here in Normandy, the diagnosis is very different.”
Mr Morin highlighted the importance of the UK to the continental economy – warning that if Britain crashes out France will require millions of euros to withstand the consequences. This intervention is timely as the PM seeks to secure a deal that is in the interests of both the UK and its European neighbours. However, threats made by the DUP’s to tear up any consensus are continuing to cloud progress – they are furious of the implications of a ‘backstop’ proposal.
Meanwhile Brexiteers have suggested that the EU is attempting to lock the UK into a customs union, as Michel Barnier continues to negotiate stubbornly with just six days to go until a decisive EU summit.