French President Emmanuel Macron attends a conference on French education system at the CNAM in Paris, France, March 27, 2018. Ludovic Marin/Pool via Reuters
LONDON, July 15 (MENA) - Chancellor Philip Hammond has warned that a no-deal Brexit could leave the new prime minister at the mercy of French president Emmanuel Macron, who could use access to the port of Calais as a way to exert pressure on the UK.
The warning came as a senior member of Jeremy Corbyn’s shadow cabinet said Labour is “likely” to go into the next general election as a Remain party offering a second referendum on EU membership, The Independent reported.
Hammond said there would be a limit to the amount of influence the government could exert in the event of no deal, despite having spent more than £4bn on preparations.
Many of the levers are held by others – the EU27 or private business,” he said. “We can seek to persuade them but we can’t control it.
"For example, we can make sure that goods flow inwards through the port of Dover without any friction but we can’t control the outward flow into the port of Calais," he said.
“The French can dial that up or dial it down, just the same as the Spanish for years have dialled up or dialled down the length of the queues at the border going into Gibraltar.”
Hammond – who said earlier this month that a disorderly Brexit could cost the Exchequer up to £90bn – has long warned against the dangers of leaving without a deal with Brussels.