Government document says UK-made cars will not be ‘valid for sale’ in EU

A surprise government document discloses that, if Britain fizzles out without a deal, British made and approved vehicles in the UK could no longer be sold in the EU.  The document warned the EU will not be able to have the ability to approve that the vehicles “comply with safety and environmental standards”. Manufacturers would need to seek consent from an authority in an EU member state if such an agreement could be struck.

This comes just two days after the boss of Jaguar Land Rover condemned Theresa May’s Brexit plan, warning that tens of thousands of jobs were being put at risk. The government would act alone to ensure EU- created cars could still be purchased in the UK country by recognising approvals if there is a no-deal Brexit, the document says. However, it does acknowledge that Brussels may no longer be inclined to ruminate the UK’s Vehicle Certification Agency (VCA) as a suitable body for sales in the EU.

“In a no deal scenario, type-approvals issued in the UK would no longer be valid for sales or registrations on the EU market,” the document reads. “This means that affected manufacturers would need to ensure that they have the correct type-approval for each market.” The document says, continuing: “VCA would continue to act as a technical service for the purpose of testing for UK type-approvals. However, it may no longer be recognised as a technical service by EU type-approval authorities.”

At a conference this week attended by Theresa May the prime minister and Ralf Speth the chief executive of Jaguar Land Rover warned of the “horrifying” outcomes of a hard Brexit, costing the company £1.2bn a year. Ralf Speth stated: “Brexit is due to happen on the 29 March, next year. Currently, I do not even know if any of our manufacturing facilities in the UK will be able to function on the 30,” he warned.

Labour MP Gareth Thomas a supporter of the anti-Brexit Best for Britain group, warned that its “another unnecessary blow to the country’s car industry”, adding: “Crashing out with no-deal could mean the future of UK car exports to the EU could hang in the balance, damaging an industry filled with thousands of high skilled jobs”. Also stating, “This no deal scenario cannot be seriously considered as an option when we know how much is at stake.”

However, the department for transport said it was “incorrect” to say UK-made cars could not be sold in the EU after a no-deal Brexit, claiming manufacturers would be able to apply to an EU approval authority. With a s spokeswoman saying: “The deciding factor is whether they obtained their EU type approval in the UK or an EU member state, not where they are manufactured”.

This is another instance of how the government’s “no deal” preparations would in fact involve trying to strike a sequence of separate mini- accords with the EU, to head off huge damage.

The Brexit secretary, Dominic Raab has written to the EU to suggest a plan, which he referred to as “no deal deals”, if the need arises; but, Brussels had beforehand refused such a method.

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