Prime minister Rishi Sunak holds a huddle with political journalists on board a government plane as he heads to Japan to attend the G7 summit in Hiroshima.
Rishi Sunak has cited “cheaper beer in pubs” as he defended the benefits of Brexit against claims leaving the European Union is not delivering for the economy.
The prime minister said the nation’s finances are receiving boosts from the departure from the EU, dismissing Nigel Farage’s declaration that “Brexit has failed”.
Sunak, speaking to journalists travelling with him to a G7 summit in Japan, insisted he is “actually delivering the benefits of Brexit as opposed to just talking about it”.
The prime minister said he has commissioned freeports, cut VAT on sanitary products, reformed alcohol duties and was culling hundreds of EU-era laws.
“I introduced freeports – a Brexit benefit around the country attracting jobs and investment to lots of different places,” Sunak said, according to the Guardian.
“We cut VAT on sanitary products, we reformed the alcohol duties that mean this summer you will be able to get cheaper beer in pubs. These are all very tangible benefits of Brexit that I’ve already delivered.”
He also said: “These are not small things and they come on top of all the other things. I feel pretty confident that we are delivering the benefits of Brexit from an economic perspective, the track record is very clear on that.”
After a lengthy response, Sunak said he was “glad to get that off my chest”.
Sunak faces pressure from Brexiteers to seize on the ability to deregulate the economy, slash taxes and scrub laws written in Brussels from the statute book. But he majorly downgraded the promised legislative “bonfire”.
His comments come as he faces demands to renegotiate the UK’s Brexit deal amid warnings the car industry in Britain faces an “existential threat” without changes, putting thousands of jobs at risk.
Vauxhall’s parent company Stellantis told MPs it will be unable to keep a commitment to make electric vehicles in the UK without changes to the Trade and Co-operation Agreement with the European Union.
Labour leader Keir Starmer said “we need a better Brexit deal” to ensure firms such as Vauxhall can continue to operate in the UK.