Dominic Raab has come underneath fireplace for saying he “hadn’t fairly understood” how reliant UK commerce in items is on the Dover-Calais crossing.
The Brexit Secretary’s remarks got here at a expertise convention as he mentioned the “bespoke association” the UK sought with the EU after it leaves the bloc.
Shadow Brexit minister Jenny Chapman steered Mr Raab “does not even perceive the very fundamentals of Brexit”.
Conservative pro-Stay MP Nicky Morgan tweeted: “Gulp.”
Based on the Institute for Authorities, Dover is “a key artery for UK commerce heading to continental Europe” with greater than 2.5m heavy items automobiles passing by way of the port yearly.
Its report says items value £119bn handed by way of the port in 2015, “representing round 17% of the UK’s complete commerce in items by worth”.
Mr Raab instructed a expertise convention on Wednesday: “We wish a bespoke association in items which recognises the peculiar, frankly, geographic, financial entity that’s the UK.
“We’re, and I hadn’t fairly understood the complete extent of this, however in case you have a look at the UK and in case you have a look at how we commerce in items, we’re notably reliant on the Dover-Calais crossing.
“And that is one of many the explanation why, and there is been a variety of controversy about this, however one of many the explanation why we needed to make it possible for now we have a really particular and really proximate relationship with the EU to make sure frictionless commerce on the border, notably for just-in-time manufacturing items whether or not it is pharmaceutical items or perishable items like meals.”