Last week it was announced that Rolls Royce, Derby’s largest private sector employer, is moving some jobs to Germany. The Derbyshire Telegraph reports that:
Engines designed and built by the firm, which has its civil aerospace division in Sinfin, have to be signed off by the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA). There is uncertainty as to how this aircraft safety and design approval process would work when the UK leaves the European Union… The firm’s design approval work is therefore being moved to Dahlewitz, close to Berlin in Germany.
This is the reality of a harmonised Europe. Ardent Leavers will tell you that there is an ever increasing infliction of red tape, but actually having a single set of laws allows businesses to easily meet standards and operate across borders.
By breaking away, we not only create the cost of maintaining our own standards authorities, but we make it far more difficult for British companies to trade with our largest export market. In addition, as the news from Derby shows, we become considerably less attractive as a base for international companies.
The alternative is continuing to accept all regulatory standards from the EU, without having any say in the making of them. To be frank, that option sucks.
In the long run, Rolls Royce says it will probably move the jobs back to the UK once the Brexit uncertainty is finally over. But it is a UK company so that makes sense. How many other businesses are simply not taking the risk, and staying away completely?