See my 2018 mail below for a quick comment on the relationship between Brexit and British car manufacturing.
And see news article today:
“British car factories will be forced to close with the loss of thousands of jobs if the government does not renegotiate its Brexit deal immediately, car maker Stellantis warned today. Stellantis owns the Vauxhall, Peugeot, Citroen and Fiat brands.”
One didn’t need to be especially prescient to predict that ramming trade barriers into a finely-balanced web of JIT European manufacturing operations might not have been an inspired idea.
A mere absence of deluded fuck-wittery would have sufficed.
But then again, if you took away the deluded fuck-wittery, you wouldn’t have had Brexit in the first place – see below:
———- Forwarded message ———
From: [ ]
Date: Wed, 26 Dec 2018 at 23:48
Subject: Q Letts politico article
To: [ ]
A posh bloke called Quentin, with a fondness for fuddy-duddy ties and possessing zero direct experience of business, assures us that all will be glorious. Tally ho! Difficult to know which is the more dispiriting – the arrogance of this article, or the facile nature of it. For instance, his ignorance of how the car industry works is staggering. Britain’s strong car manufacturing base is partly owned by the Germans and Japanese. Cars are not neatly manufactured in one country and exported to another. There is a finely-tuned JIT manufacturing logistics web wherein parts are started in EU territory A and finished or incorporated in eg Britain. Sir Q seemingly doesn’t get any of that. And he’s miles off target in his contention that eg German car manufacturers will wreck the EU for the sake of exports to Britain. Dream on, you deluded twerp. The EU27 exports 11% of its cars to Britain. By stark contrast, Britain exports 54% of its cars to the EU. Sure, the EU will be sorry to lose the UK market; but the UK market simply isn’t significant enough to be a game changer in the negotiations.
Undaunted, our hero ploughs on – this is b/s on stilts:
“No deal would, in fact, have tremendous advantages. It would allow Britain immediately to negotiate and sign trade deals beyond Europe. It would force May’s government to cut taxes to make us more competitive. It would result in a tremendous boost to national unity.”
Remember, this bloke is a comedy sketch writer for a comedy magazine; and, boy, does it show. Sir Q is of the opinion that, but for the dastardly EU, British manufacturing would stride the earth like a colossus. But the Germans have a massive car industry presence and in China, and have had this for many years. Being in the EU has been no impediment for them whatsoever. There are three rule makers in global commerce: the US, the EU and China. Every other country is a rule taker. A certain type of posh-git Englishman, drunk on past glories, simply hasn’t realised this painful truth yet. It’s the old truism about the EU being made up of small countries and countries that haven’t realised that. In fairness to Quentin, he doubtless does sincerely believe that fighting to get out of the world’s largest trading union is a smart move. Not even Rees Mogg believes that. Tellingly, despite his Brextremist rhetoric, Mr Rees Mogg is so convinced of the many benefits of Brexit that he’s already re-domiciled his investment companies to another EU jurisdiction, namely Ireland.
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