1. ITV Report

No-Deal Brexit 'disastrous' for North Wales

Credit: Jonathan Brady/PA Wire/PA Images

First Minister Mark Drakeford will tell business leaders later that a no-deal Brexit represents the worst case scenario and is wholly unacceptable.

He will be addressing the Deeside Business Forum’s Brexit Business conference at Theatr Clwyd.

We are at a critical point in the Brexit process and the message from the Welsh Government is clear, a no-deal Brexit is wholly unacceptable and must be ruled out as an option.

Manufacturing is of critical importance to Deeside. Airbus alone employs 6,000 people, Toyota 600 and their suppliers thousands more. As Airbus and many others have made clear, a no deal outcome – which would seriously disrupt supply chains - would be disastrous.

It is clear that a no-deal Brexit would be hugely damaging on North Wales, and must be avoided at all costs. “But we also need a deal which gives business the long-term certainty it needs. Not one, like the UK Government’s that only postpones, not removes the threat of the cliff-edge.

The root of the problem isn’t the EU but the refusal of the UK Government to commit to continued participation in the Single Market and Customs Union, a form of Brexit the EU would have preferred if it had not been for the Prime Minister’s red lines.

Our message to the UK Government is clear, rub out the red lines, go back to the drawing board in terms of the long-term relationship and provide the certainty business needs.”

– Mark Drakeford AM, First Minister

Meanwhile Theresa May has reached out to union leaders as she makes an 11th-hour attempt to reach out to her political opponents to get her Brexit deal through the Commons.

Downing Street said the Prime Minister had "constructive" phone conversations about her Brexit deal with trade union big beast Len McCluskey of Unite, a Brexit supporter and close confidant of Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, as well as Tim Roache of the GMB.

Number 10 also confirmed ministers would "consider very seriously" moves by Labour MPs to safeguard workers' rights after Brexit in an attempt to win support for her deal, if the backbench amendment was selected by the Speaker.

The amendment would keep EU rules on pay and conditions, health and safety issues, and environmental standards.