McGovern – ‘Absurd’ unilateral free trade plan would be a project of economic suicide

The UK should unilaterally drop all its trade tariffs on imports after Brexit, a group of pro-hard Brexit economists says today (Sunday). Economists for Fair Trade, led by Professor Patrick Minford, make the claim in the report ‘From Project Fear to Project Prosperity’. 

During the EU referendum campaign, Professor Minford admitted that his plan to unilaterally drop tariffs would “mostly eliminate manufacturing…But this shouldn’t scare us.”

Commenting, Alison McGovern MP, leading supporter of Open Britain, said:

“All anyone needs to know about this absurd plan is that its own author admits it would ‘mostly eliminate manufacturing’ in the UK. 

“Unilaterally scrapping our tariffs without achieving similar reductions in the tariff rates of other countries would see Britain swamped with imports, leaving our manufacturers and farmers unable to compete. The levels of bankruptcy and unemployment, especially in industry and agriculture, would sky-rocket. 

“This is a project of economic suicide, not prosperity. No responsible Government would touch this report with a barge pole as a source of ideas for our future trade policy.”


Notes to editors:

Professor Minford’s comments are reported here: