The OBR’s Richard Hughes
Brexit reduces the UK’s overall output by 4% compared to if the country had remained in the EU, an expert has said.
Richard Hughes, chairman of the Office for Budget Responsibility [OBR], said leaving the EU had an impact on the economy on the “magnitude” of the Covid-19 pandemic.
He told the BBC’s Sunday With Laura Kuenssberg programme: “We think that it in the long run [Brexit] reduces our overall output by around 4% compared to had we remained in the EU.
“I’ve struggled to put it in any kind of sensible context.
“It’s a shock to the UK economy of the order of magnitude to other shocks that we’ve seen from the pandemic, from the energy crisis.”
Earlier this year Mark Carney also said the UK was in the “most difficult” position of all the major world economies.
The former governor of the Bank of England said the problem had been “amplified” by factors including Covid and Brexit.
It comes as businesses up and down the UK struggle to fill vacancies due to the shortage of skilled workers post-Brexit.
Rishi Sunak’s government is planning to relax the rules on foreign workers to plug Britain’s chronic labour shortages.
Bricklayers, carpenters and plasterers are among those who will be able to get work visas more easily after the government updated the shortage occupation list.
However, hospitality, which has had problems recruiting, was not included.
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