Boris Johnson: Brexit will boost innovation, jobs and renewal after pandemic
Oris Johnson has said the historic Brexit vote five years ago will now act as a boost for jobs and renewal across the UK as it recovers from the pandemic.
In a statement marking the anniversary of the 2016 referendum on Wednesday, the Prime Minister said it was his “mission” to use the freedoms he has given to provide a better future for the British people.
However, in a starkly mixed message, pro-European veteran Lord Heseltine said the prospects were “threatening” with the peace process in Northern Ireland genuinely threatened.
In his statement, Mr Johnson, who successfully led the Vote Leave campaign, said the country voted five years ago to “take back control of our destiny”.
“This government got Brexit and we have already got our money, our laws, our borders and our waters,” he said.
“Now that we recover from this pandemic, we will seize the true potential of our regained sovereignty to unite and level our whole UK.
“By controlling our regulations and subsidies, and with free ports spurring new investment, we will drive innovation, jobs and renewal in all regions of our country.
“The decision to leave the EU may now be part of our history, but our clear mission is to use the freedoms it brings to shape a better future for our people. “
However, Lord Heseltine, the former Deputy Prime Minister who is now president of the European Movement, said Brexit was “the complete opposite” of what the country needed after the pandemic.
“Five years later, Brexit is far from ‘over’. This is only just beginning and the forecasts are ominous, ”he said.
“Storm clouds are looming on the horizon, foremost is the threat to the Good Friday Peace Agreement in Northern Ireland.
“The fishing industry has now expressed its betrayal and the Australia trade deal will slowly erode the competitiveness of UK farmers over the next 15 years.
“Meanwhile, the financial services industry is quietly shifting its activities to Europe in order to escape the lingering uncertainty of Brexit. “