'Nigel Farage can admit Brexit has failed, why can’t Oliver Dowden?' – SNP

'Nigel Farage Can Admit Brexit Has Failed, Why Can’t Oliver Dowden?' – Snp
Mhairi Black accused the UK government and the Opposition of ignoring the economic damage caused by the UK’s exit from the EU. Photo: PA Images
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David Lynch and Ben Hatton, PA

Labour and the Tories are “happy to ignore” the facts of Brexit, the Scottish National Party (SNP) has claimed.

Mhairi Black, the party’s deputy Westminster leader, accused both the UK government and Opposition of ignoring the economic damage done by the UK’s exit from the EU.


She said “even Nigel Farage can admit that Brexit has failed” and asked Britain deputy prime minister Oliver Dowden why he could not do the same.

The scrutiny in the UK's House of Commons comes as a major UK car manufacturer has warned the industry faces an “existential threat” without changes to post-Brexit trade arrangements with the European Union, putting thousands of jobs at risk.

Vauxhall’s parent company Stellantis said it will be unable to keep a commitment to make electric vehicles in the UK without changes to the Trade and Co-operation Agreement with the EU.

At Prime Minister’s Questions, Paisley and Renfrewshire South MP Ms Black said: “Brexit Britain faces higher food prices, a lack of workers, a shrinking economy and a decline in living standards. Why is he happy to ignore those facts?”


Oliver Dowden
Oliver Dowden during Prime Minister’s Questions (House of Commons/PA)

Mr Dowden replied: “We have one of the fastest growth rates in the whole of the G7 since Brexit. We all know… the policy of the SNP, and they said it this weekend, and I quote: ‘We need to undo Brexit.’

“But let me tell you. If I were them, I would start by undoing the mess they have left Scotland in, and start working with the United Kingdom Government and focus on the priorities of the Scottish people, not the priorities of their party.”


Ms Black responded: “The only thing more deluded than that defence of Brexit is the Labour Party’s support of it.”

She added: “Just today, the world’s fourth-largest car manufacturer said that Brexit was, and again I quote, ‘a threat to our export business and the sustainability of our UK manufacturing options’.

“Even Nigel Farage can admit that Brexit has failed. So why can’t he?”

Mr Dowden replied: “One of the best ways of getting behind industry in this country is to get behind the trade deals we are striking with many countries around the world.”


He added: “I see last week the SNP promised to build a new Scotland. I don’t know whether she is aware, but the SNP have been in power for 13 years (sic).

“They should stop their focus on independence, and focus on the priorities of the Scottish people.”

Speaking to BBC’s Newsnight on Monday, former Ukip leader Mr Farage denied that Britain would have been better off remaining in the EU, but said the country had “not actually benefited from Brexit economically”.

He said: “What Brexit has proved, I’m afraid, is that our politicians are about as useless as the commissioners in Brussels were.


“We have mismanaged this totally.”

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