British businesses like BT and Serco could be blocked from £350bn EU public contracts market under Macron’s ‘buy European act’
The newly elected French President has threatened to block British businesses like BT and Serco from the £350 billion market for public contracts in the EU.
Emmanuel Macron included a ‘buy European act’ in his manifesto which would hurt British industry by locking it out of the all-important European market.
The proposal would bar foreign companies from bidding for lucrative public contracts in the 27 member states, once Britain has left the Union.
The measure is one of several aimed at protecting the EU and ensuring sizeable profits for member states.
Macron has said he will be tough negotiator and talked up the possibility of a hard Brexit. He called the UK’s decision to leave the EU ‘a crime’ and has stated that Britain has two options: paying EU budgets or a ‘total exit’.
His chief economic adviser, Jean Pisani-Ferry, told the BBC yesterday that the incoming French president would be ‘a tough and demanding partner’ in negotiations.
Pisani-Ferry said: ‘He is not the kind of man [who would] agree with the dismantling of the EU.’
However the proposed ‘buy European act’ would put Macron in conflict with the European Commission, which recently pledged that it would ‘never advocate a buy European only policy’.
The proposal has triggered fierce criticism from Leave campaigners and talk of retaliatory measures.
John Longworth, chairman of Leave Means Leave, told The Times: ‘The continental Europeans have been playing this game on procurement for a very long time. It’s about time we caught up.’
Macron swept to victory with a resounding 66 per cent election landslide that ended any hopes of victory for the nationalist firebrand Marine Le Pen, 48, and her National Front (FN) party.
May 9th, 2017: Daily Mail