The Financial Times has published the UK’s government’s latest statistics about the disastrous fall in the UK’s output in 2020: “UK economic output fell 9.9 per cent in 2020, the largest drop in 300 years and more than twice the fall during the financial crisis, laying bare the scale of the pandemic’s impact.” (FT 12.02.21)
The fall in economic activity is many times worse than Germany and the USA and well below the EU average.
The Bank of England is talking about a fast road to recovery by describing the economy as like a “coiled spring” ready to release large amounts of “pent-up financial energy”. They also expect consumer confidence to surge back thanks to the vaccine programme, with the economy firing “on all cylinders” by spring.
The Finance Minister, Mr Sunak, agrees with these comments because he says, “the vaccine roll-out is going really well”.
The interesting thing here is that the impact of Brexit is not mentioned by the FT, the Bank of England or by the Minister of Finance. British companies have been preparing for more difficult trading conditions and by moving operations to EU member countries. Buyers of British products from EU member countries have also been moving the orders to other sources – it is only natural that Brexit is hampering business and things will not improve rapidly as the politicians would like to see.