Impact assessment of Brexit on the United Kingdom 'don't exist'

Simon Dawson  Reuters

Simon Dawson Reuters

"So the government hasn't undertaken any impact assessment on the implications of leaving the European Union for different sectors of the British economy?"

The U.K. official shepherding Britain's departure from the European Union says no formal assessments have been made on the economic impact of leaving the 28-nation bloc.

David Davis has been accused of "misleading parliament" over the Brexit impact studies, after he repeatedly denied any had been carried out.

Davis repeatedly responded with "no" as Benn read out a list of sectors, including aerospace and financial services and asked whether the government had produced an impact assessment on them.

In an exchange during which Mr Davis was said to look "frazzled", he told the committee: "You don't need to do a formal impact assessment to understand that if there is a regulatory hurdle between your producers and a market, there will be an impact".

"Ministers must now urgently undertake these impact assessments and ensure people are given the facts". I am not a fan of economic models as they have all been proven wrong.

On the impact assessments, a sometimes incredulous-sounding Benn asked Davis how they could not exist when he had told MPs in September previous year there were sectoral analyses for "about 50 cross-cutting sectors, [for] what is going to happen to them".

In October, Davis said the assessments had been conducted in "excruciating" detail. When you have a paradigm change - as happened in 2008 with the financial crisis - all the models were wrong.

After the announcement of the Budget last month, voices across the sector said that Brexit was its biggest concern because of the uncertainty it caused.

"Similarly, what we are dealing with here in every outcome - whether it is a free trade agreement, whether it is a WTO outcome or whether it is something between that on the spectrum - it is a paradigm change".

People seem to assume an impact assessment consists of a quantitative forecast.

Impact assessments would begin "a little closer to the negotiating timetable", Davis told the committee.

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