Tory ‘botched Brexit deal’ contributing to cost-of-living crisis, say Welsh Lib-Dems
Re-joining the EU single market is essential to reducing the economic turmoil facing Wales and the UK, Welsh Liberal Democrats have said.
According to the Welsh Liberal Democrats, being outside of the EU single market is not only damaging the Welsh economy and businesses, but is also having a direct impact on the cost-of-living crisis with tariffs and red tape feeding through to food prices among others.
Trade between Wales and the EU in 2021 was still down 14% since 2019. In April, Adam Posen, an American economist and former member of the Bank of England’s monetary policy committee, said that 80% of the explanation for Britain’s higher inflation rate than other European states was bound up with Brexit and its endless complexity.
The party has also said that re-joining the Single Market could help solve severe labour shortages in the economy, including in hospitality, agriculture, the NHS, social care and dentistry.
Welsh Liberal Democrat Leader Jane Dodds MS said: “Under the Conservatives the economy is in decline and people’s living standards are set to see their largest drop since records began.
“One of the issues contributing to our economic stagnation and the cost-of-living crisis is the botched Brexit deal the Conservatives forced on us. By taking us out of the single market, they cut us off from our nearest trading partners, stagnating investment and growth.
“Meanwhile in many sectors, including in hospitality and agriculture we have significant labour shortages, shortages that have also impacted the NHS, social care and dental treatment.
“It is disappointing to see Labour so robustly rule out returning to the single market over the last week, it is clearly what the Welsh economy, businesses and people need.
“The Conservatives Brexit Deal was also a con and it is now contributing heavily to a low growth, high tax economy in the UK.
“We urgently need to hit the reset button and remove trade barriers with our nearest neighbours; the last time we negotiated unfettered trade with our neighbours, it kickstarted a new period of economic growth. We now need to repeat that in order to help reduce inflation and increase growth and that’s what the Welsh Liberal Democrats are campaigning for.”
The Welsh Liberal Democrats adopted a policy to re-join the EU Single Market and Customs Union during the 2021 Senedd Election, viewing it as a stepping stone to eventually re-joining the EU.
The Party has reiterated its calls following comments from Labour over the last week refusing to push for membership of the EU single market.
Support our Nation today
For the price of a cup of coffee a month you can help us create an independent, not-for-profit, national news service for the people of Wales, by the people of Wales.