Stevenage Airbus: Boss says no deal may affect jobs

Airbus has launched the C Series jet renaming it the A220. Pic Ryan McAleer Belfast Telegraph Business Correspondent in Toulouse

DAVOS, Jan 25 ― British finance minister Philip Hammond hit back at supporters of a no-deal Brexit yesterday, telling business leaders that leaving without a deal would break promises made in the 2016 referendum and risk fuelling populism.

Britain's divided Parliament is set to vote again on Prime Minister Theresa May's proposal on Tuesday - and on rival plans, including attempts by groups of legislators to delay Britain's exit and to rule out "no-deal".

"Please don't listen to the Brexiteers' madness which asserts that, because we have huge plants here, we will not move and we will always be here", Mr. Enders said.

Leo Vardakar has today warned that a no-deal Brexit poses an existential threat to Ireland.

But with only months to go until Britain's departure date, deals appear thin on the ground and the government is boasting about smaller achievements instead.

"I can reiterate our commitment to the Good Friday Agreement, support to peace and trans-border cooperation, but a no-deal Brexit will clearly, clearly put most of these things at risk".

Meanwhile, details were published yesterday of the Irish government's legislation for dealing with a hard Brexit.

"In a no-deal scenario Ireland will still be in the single market, and will still be part of all those trade deals which come with being part of Europe, the trade deal with Japan, the trade deal with Canada, the trade deal with Korea, the trade deal with Singapore".

Miles Celic, chief executive of TheCityUK, which promotes Britain's financial services overseas, said there is no appetite in the industry to take a bulldozer to current rules.

Theresa May has pinned her hopes on gaining concessions from the European Union surrounding the backstop as part of her Plan B for Brexit.

She guaranteed changes from the European Union to a much-disputed measure created to ensure an open border between European Union member Ireland and the U.K.'s Northern Ireland.

Less than two years ago, a top United Kingdom minister said that reaching a free trade agreement with the whole European Union should be "one of the easiest in human history".

The backstop is effectively an insurance policy to avoid a return to a hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland, if no other solution can be found through a wider trade deal with the EU.

Ford Chief Financial Officer Bob Shanks on Wednesday declined to say what the financial impact of a no-deal exit could be, but said Ford was already planning for it.

Brexit Minister Chris Heaton-Harris said: "It does beg the reply that why on earth is he not then backing the deal that delivers the certainty all of those businesses he named have asked for?"

Looking to negotiate a better deal while being prepared to leave on March 29 is the sensible and right course of action to take. When this caller insisted Airbus would never leave, James O'Brien demanded to know why he knew more than the CEO of the company. "I don't know whether the European Union would be prepared to do that, but if they're not, then we're not going to support it".

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