The lack of trade agreement between the United Kingdom and Europe would generate billions of euro in extra costs for British and European companies after Britain leaves the bloc, a new report has forecast.
In aggregate, a “hard Brexit” would hit EU27 firms slightly more than British companies, according to a study from the consulting firm Oliver Wyman and law firm Clifford Chance, published Monday.
New tariffs and non-tariff barriers were predicted to cost British firms around £27 billion (about €30 billion) and European exporters £31 billion (€35 billion).
According to the study’s authors, these additional costs threaten “profitability and the existence of certain companies”, such as those in the automotive sector.
“Red tape” would also impact a number of other sectors, including agriculture, agri-food, consumer goods, chemicals and plastics, and financial services, due to the necessity to install new infrastructure to continue to serve clients within the EU, the Oliver Wyman and Clifford Change report stated.
On 2 March, Theresa May, the British prime minister, declared that the UK would leave the single market, customs union and authority of the European Court of Justice, leaving a free trade agreement as the most likely future arrangement with the EU.
Discussions around the financial services sector post-Brexit are expected to be held during the European Council meeting on 22-23 March.