According to the website Politico, Raab was reported to have said: “I hadn’t quite understood the full extent of this, but if you look at the UK and look at how we trade in goods, we are particularly reliant on the Dover-Calais crossing.
“And that is one of the reasons why we have wanted to make sure we have a specific and very proximate relationship with the EU, to ensure frictionless trade at the border.
“I don’t think it is a question so much of the risk of major shortages, but I think probably the average consumer might not be aware of the full extent to which the choice of goods that we have in the stores are dependent on one or two very specific trade routes.”
According to 2016 figures, the Dover-Calais crossing was most used method to move goods vehicles in & out of the UK, with 1,905,000 units passing across it.
Labour’s shadow Brexit minister, Jenny Chapman, responded to Mr Raab’s speech, asking: “How are we meant to trust this government to deliver a good deal for this country when we have a Brexit secretary who doesn’t even understand the very basics of Brexit?”
The comment drew scorn from the scientist and broadcaster Brian Cox, who tweeted: “How could it possibly come as a surprise to Dominic Raab that our most important trade gateway is that which is closest geographically to our most important market?”
‘Is it possible’, Minister Raab asks his closest advisors, ‘that this big blob of land here’ – jabbing at a map with his croissant – ‘over this little channel of sea just off the coast of Dover, might be important in the context of this brexity thing we’re doing?’ https://t.co/lscHnuc3JL
— Brian Cox (@ProfBrianCox) November 8, 2018
Nicky Morgan, the former Conservative cabinet minister who advocates a soft Brexit, tweeted simply: “Gulp’ #enoughsaid.”
This from @Jack_Blanchard_ Politico newsletter this morning ‘“I hadn’t quite understood the full extent of this,” Raab admitted, “but if you look at the U.K. and look at how we trade in goods, we are particularly reliant on the Dover-Calais crossing…Gulp’ #enoughsaid
— Nicky Morgan MP (@NickyMorgan01) November 8, 2018