Latest figures for the UK from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) have been scrutinised by Facts4EU.Org in a report for non-party political campaigning organisation, the Campaign for an Independent Britain (CIBUK). Total exports from the first three months of this year have been compared to the same period in 2016 – just weeks before 17.4million people voted for Brexit.
During the first quarter of 2016, total UK exports of goods and services to the European Union stood at £56.9billion.
But for the same three months period of this year, that figure jumped to £72billion – a massive increase of 26.6 percent.
Remainers will be looking on with interest as according to a House of Commons Library report, “for 2021 as a whole, UK GDP growth was 7.4 percent. This was the highest in the G7”.
Britain also outgrew all of the other remaining 27 EU member states during the first quarter of this year, according to the official figures, cited by Facts4EU.Org.
The analysis firm also provided a wider picture of the growth in exports from the UK to the EU by comparing the whole year 2021 totals with the pre-Brexit referendum year of 2015.
The latest ONS data shows total UK exports of goods and services stood at £223.3billion seven years ago.
But in 2021 – the year Brexit Britain formally left the the EU – this figure jumped to £261.7billion – an increase of 17.2 percent.
This came despite the UK continuing to bounce back from the impacts of Covid lockdowns- many of which shut the country down completely the year before in 2020 at the height of the pandemic.
Facts4EU.Org said without these effects, “the increase in UK exports to the EU “would have been even higher”.
During 2021, much of the EU and the rest of the world were still being impacted by lockdowns and a general decrease in commercial activity.
Therefore, in order to get a better idea of the effect of Covid on exports, Facts4EU.Org analysed the drop in 2021 from the last pre-Covid year, which was 2019.
To eliminate any idea of a “Brexit effect” on exports to the EU, the firm analysed the UK’s trade exports to the rest of the world.
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This revealed total exports of goods and services from the UK to non-EU countries fell by 10.5 percent over the “Covid years”.
Without the onset of Covid, “we could have expected the UK’s exports to the EU to have been around 10 percent higher” than the 2015 versus 2021 trade figures mentioned above.
Facts4EU.Org concluded: “It’s easy to look at the negatives. ‘Bad news sells’, as they say in what used to be called Fleet Street.
“In our report, we have presented positive news. Total exports to the EU were up 17 percent last year, compared to the pre-Referendum year.
“In the last quarter they were up by almost 27 percent, compared to the same quarter in 2016.
“Given the falls in trade across the world as a result of Covid-19, this is an impressive achievement from Brexit Britain.
“Yes, we’re facing difficult economic times but then so is the EU and so are a great many other countries around the world.”