JP Morgan 'could leave Bournemouth' under no-deal Brexit, says MP

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BANKING giant JP Morgan would “think about departing Bournemouth” if Britain left the European Union without a deal, an MP has warned.

The American bank is the town’s biggest private sector employer, with around 4,000 jobs at its Chaseside base.

But Bournemouth East MP Tobias Ellwood said the company would have strong concerns about crashing out of the EU without a deal.

“I suspect they would not admit it themselves, but I suspect they would think about departing Bournemouth if that was the case,” he said.

His remarks came as he outlined his fears about a “no deal” Brexit in a question and answer session at a Bournemouth care home, with only 10 weeks to go until Britain is scheduled to leave the EU.

“My worry is that we are defaulting potentially towards a no deal scenario and that means we will move into a third party status when we speak of the EU,” he said.

“The paperwork and protocols are not in place. There are no legal documents at the moment to manage the movement at the borders and from aeroplanes and so on.

“ They’re trying to do their best to mitigate that now – this is some contingency planning that is taking place – but even just a small delay at our borders at Dover, just a few minutes, would lead to a huge tailback, many, many kilometres,” he said.

This would mean slower supplies to supermarkets and vehicle movements for the oil and gas industries, he said.

“There would be significant consequences to our way of life in a no deal scenario, which is why I’ve said all of us should be working very hard to make sure this doesn’t happen,” he said.

Asked if there was an “up side” to Brexit, Mr Ellwood said: “Britain will take a hit, there’s no doubt about it, but there is an entrepreneurial spirit in Britain, there’s a determination that we get up, dust ourselves off and move forward and we do have control of our own taxes, we can make Britain an attractive place to do business.”

However, e said he recognised concerns about the EU, which was “not very accountable and transparent”.

His remarks were made at Seabourne House Care Home Southbourne, where he listened to concerns about the impact of Brexit on the care industry.

He indicated he could support a second referendum on Brexit, saying the original decision could “decay” over time.

“As we drift further and further away in time from that 2016 snapshot of opinion, if the government can’t get agreement, it makes sense for people to be given that second opportunity,” he said.

But he said this would be “the last point in a long journey”, adding: “I would hope we’re able to secure a deal before then.”

During the 2016 referendum campaign, JP Morgan chairman Jamie Dimon visited Bournemouth to warn that up to 4,000 UK jobs could disappear after Brexit.