Will Brexit Actually Cost £66bn A Year? LBC Fact Check

14 October 2016, 13:22

LBC Fact Check: Will Brexit Actually Cost £66bn A Year?


Jeremy Corbyn told PMQs that a hard Brexit will cost the government £66billion a year. But is he right? We put his claim through the LBC Fact Check.

Mr Corbyn said they were the Treasury's own figures. But is he right? We investigate with help from FullFact.

"There’s no guarantee that tax revenue will be £66billion lower, even in the Treasury’s view.

"Back in April, the Treasury said that after 15 years the UK economy could be anywhere between 5.4% and 9.5% smaller than it would have been if the UK drops out of the EU single market and relies ONLY on its membership of the World Trade Organisation. That’s what's been called a ‘Hard Brexit’.

"The middle of 5.4 and 9.5 is 7.5%. So that’s what’s giving Jeremy Corbyn his figure for the hit to the economy.

"A smaller economy means that people are making less money. If they’re making less money they’re paying fewer taxes.

"The Treasury said that could mean anywhere between £38billion £66billion in lost tax revenues. That’s quite a big range and Jeremy Corbyn has only quoted the top number.

"The middle of the range is £52billion. Now, that’s still a lot of money - it’s almost half of what we spend on the NHS - but it’s not certain.

"There are other organisations who have produced similar forecasts for Hard Brexit scenarios. Almost all of them are bad, but the Treasury’s expectations are among the more severe.

"So Jeremy Corbyn is quoting the WORST of the Treasury’s worst case scenario."

With thanks to Full Fact.

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