BANK of England boss Mark Carney has dashed Boris Johnson’s hopes of tariff-free trade with Europe after a No-Deal Brexit.
The Governor said there was no way for the UK to carry on importing and exporting goods without extra charges if we crash out in October.
He told the BBC that he had discussed the matter with the head of the World Trade Organisation and that even Brexiteer minister Liam Fox was of the same opinion.
His comments will come as a blow to the Tory leadership favourite, who told the BBC debate this week: “There will be no tariffs, there will be no quotas.”
Speaking to Radio 4’s Today programme yesterday Mr Carney, who will step down in the New Year, said: “We should be clear that not having an agreement with the EU means there are tariffs automatically because the EU have to apply the same rules to us as they apply to everyone else.
“We should be clear that no deal means no deal – it means there is a substantial change in the trading relationship with the EU.”
He dismissed Mr Johnson’s plan to get a so-called standstill agreement – maintaining free trade – under a rule known as the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (Gatt) 24 of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) treaty.
“The Gatt rules are clear – the International Trade Secretary Liam Fox has testified to this effect in Parliament and I have spoken to the director-general of the World Trade Organisation on this fact.
“Gatt applies if you have an agreement, not if you have decided not to have an agreement or have been unable to come to an agreement.”
Mr Carney also warned 150,000 businesses have not got their paperwork in order for a No-Deal Brexit, in another blow to Mr Johnson’s hopes of a smooth departure in October.
He said firms have been stockpiling but went on: “It provides a very short-term level of preparation … well, weeks really.”
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