Sadiq Khan, Mayor of London speaks at London is Open event

London’s Global and European Future: a response to the Brexit paper

London was the only region in England that voted to remain in the EU referendum, but the British public as a whole voted to leave – and we must now respect their democratic will. 

I am optimistic about London, London’s future and the future of our country. In the long term, our capital will continue to thrive, continue to be open and continue to be a world leader. 

But at the same time, we should be under no illusion about the scale of the challenges that lie ahead - and the potential consequences of a badly managed Hard Brexit. These are risks we simply can’t ignore.

London is the economic engine of our country – accounting for a third of national growth. When London succeeds, Britain succeeds. But the Government’s negotiation position - as set out in the White Paper - puts London’s and Britain’s economic prosperity at risk.

The Prime Minister’s assertion that ‘no deal for Britain is better than a bad deal for Britain’ is not necessarily true. ‘No deal’ would mean us crashing out of the EU and relying on basic World Trade Organisation rules - the very worst case scenario. This could be terrible for London and for the British economy.

This response to the Government’s White Paper sets out why ministers must now do whatever is necessary to avoid a Hard Brexit and to secure an interim deal as part of the negotiations. 

And it explains why it is the Government’s foremost responsibility to negotiate a deal with Europe that protects jobs, growth and living standards, secures the fullest possible access to the single market and ensures we can continue to attract the best talent from Europe and around the world.

Sadiq Khan