As Britain gears up for an early election to decide the fate of Brexit, the economy has miserably slowed down, the first-ever in seven years. Both leading parties headed by Boris Johnson and Jeremy Corbyn have promised a boost in the economy though.
A direct result of the global economic slowdown, Britain recorded snail-paced growth in October, hitting its factories and construction industry. According to a Reuters’ poll, between August to October, growth flat-lined compared with the previous three-month period, the Office for National Statistics confirmed.
However, the major effect has come post the news got out of the European Union leaving Britain on October 31. Also, uncertainty about the outcome of the Dec. 12 national election is likely to have caused more caution among businesses since then. Prime Minister Boris Johnson has urged voters to back him and his Brexit deal, saying it would “unleash a great tide of investment” into Britain when it clears a currently deadlocked parliament.
In his favor, Jeremy Corbyn has guaranteed that it will hold a fresh Brexit referendum after negotiating a new Brexit deal. This news has set off potentially some concerns among many businesses about other Labour policies including higher corporate taxes and nationalization of some key industries.
While speaking to the Guardian, John Hawksworth, chief economist with PWC predicted, “Growth seems likely to remain subdued through the rest of 2019, but we would hope for a gradual revival in activity over the course of 2020 if current political and economic uncertainties ease. Our main scenario is for 1% GDP growth in 2020 assuming an orderly Brexit.”
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