Brexit news: No-deal will cause ‘serious’ hit to UK economy, OECD warns, as talks ‘close to the wire’

Andy Gregory and Zoe Tidman
·1-min read
<p>EU’s chief negotiator Michel Barnier arrives for talks in London</p> (Stefan Rosseau/PA Wire)

EU’s chief negotiator Michel Barnier arrives for talks in London

(Stefan Rosseau/PA Wire)

Failure to strike an EU trade deal will land a “serious” blow to the UK economy and a “strongly negative effect on trade, productivity and jobs in the longer term”, the OECD has warned, as Michael Gove admitted Brexit talks were “getting down to the wire”.

With just 30 days until the transition period ends, business secretary Alok Sharma wrote to nearly five million firms to outline “the top actions they need to take”, urging them to prepare for new paperwork and procedures, as the government announced it would build a new Border Operation centre to ease “short-term disruption”.

Meanwhile, more than 50 Tory MPs rebelled against the government over its new coronavirus tier system, after being left unimpressed with Downing Street’s costings of the rules, which claimed it was impossible to make any “meaningful” predictions about their economic impact.

The majority of Labour abstained during Tuesday’s Commons vote, although some MPs broke ranks to vote against the measures.