CEA outlines concerns at ‘brinkmanship’ involved in Brexit negotiations

Rob Oliver CEA CEO
Rob Oliver

THE Construction Equipment Association (CEA) has reaffirmed ‘industry concerns’ about the ‘brinksmanship’ involved in the Brexit negotiations between the UK and the European Union.

The trade body said an ‘Australia-style deal’ which government is prepared to accept is a synonym for a ‘no-deal’ with the UK moving to World Trade Organisation terms from January 2021. The CEA stated that this will confirm an ‘arms length relationship’ between the UK and the EU, with both the automotive and agricultural sectors to be hit hard by tariffs with this arrangement.

CEA chief executive, Rob Oliver, said, “We continue to stress to government that the well-being of UK construction equipment manufacturing is linked with that of manufacturing as a whole. Tier 1 suppliers and below often supply to the car and agricultural machinery sectors – and even the aerospace industry.

“When one sector is in trouble it can cause a ripple effect. With the diminishing prospect of the free trade agreement we were promised, then the rationale for investing in UK manufacturing comes under pressure. With the continuing spectre of Covid-19 still affecting all businesses, we are coming to a watershed moment for our industry.”