back to article Thanks, Brexit. Tesla boss Elon Musk reveals Berlin as location for Euro Gigafactory

'Leccy car baron and space botherer Elon Musk has unveiled a surprising pick of Berlin for the company's European "Gigafactory 4", quickly following up by blabbing to car mag Auto Express that "Brexit had made it too risky to put a Gigafactory in the UK." Speaking at the Golden Steering Wheel Awards, Musk said last night the …

  1. firefly

    No, the UK was never in the running

    There's a lot that you can pin on Brexit, but not this, and I doubt the result would have been any different five years ago. Whether we like it or not, Germany is the centre of manufacturing in Europe. The UK's economy relies on services.

    1. rtfazeberdee

      Re: No, the UK was never in the running

      Of course it would have been. UK is/was the springboard for most countries to the EU (nissan, honda etc). And according to Musk himself, he said Brexit was the a reason. No-one in their right mind would plink their business in the UK when they would be subject to tariffs to reach the 500M in the EU, cheaper to put into the EU and export to a puny 60M in the UK - even brexiter Dyson went to a country that had a trade agreement with the EU rather than do it in UK.

      1. MatthewSt

        Re: No, the UK was never in the running

        Back in 2014

        "Musk also confirmed the UK will be the base for a brand new Tesla R&D centre, which could even precede a vehicle assembly plant in Britain – if demand is high enough. “We’ll have an R&D centre here before a factory”, Musk said.

        “We’ll have our first European factory in continental Europe, perhaps the Netherlands, but it makes sense to have one in the UK once we’re producing more than 500,000 units. But the factory needs to be running at full capacity [to be viable].”

        Source: https://www.autoexpress.co.uk/tesla/model-s/87332/tesla-plans-uk-rd-base-charging-network-and-25k-3-series-rival

        So we weren't in the running for a factory, but it looks like we're no longer in the running for an R&D centre

        1. 4whatitsworth

          Re: No, the UK was never in the running

          A UK Battery R&D facility will be ready in Coventry, early 2020. www.ukbic.co.uk

          1. Roland6 Silver badge

            Re: No, the UK was never in the running

            re: UKBIC

            I note just like previous Government investments in "technology skills", they got their priorities 'right' [ironic]: spend millions on brand new building rather than actually getting R&D activities started...

            Given this announcement and Brexit, this is looking like yet another taxpayer funded new building destined to remain empty...

            1. P. Lee Silver badge

              Re: No, the UK was never in the running

              I suspect this is the heart of it: which country will have the best subsidies? I hear Tesla is very good at milking them.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: No, the UK was never in the running

                "I hear Tesla is very good at milking them"

                Or

                I hear Tesla will readily accept any reduced costs for opening up a $multi billion facility and employing hundreds of people in a key tech and environmentally sector.

                The cost, effort and importance of a facility like this to Tesla, it wouldn't be about tax breaks. It's going to be a combination of everything but the fundamental location, resources and infrastructure is going to play the biggest part.

                Amazon could start up a new factory in a few months if they were given a better tax offer and it had a motorway near buy, not so easy for a major car manufacturing plant from a new car company.

          2. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

            Re: No, the UK was never in the running

            >A UK Battery R&D facility will be ready in Coventry, early 2020

            They are going to develop a battery that leaks oil ?

            1. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge

              Re: No, the UK was never in the running

              +1 Off to Coventry with You! Says the ghost of Lord Nuffield.

              And may Lucas, the Prince of Darkness be a guiding light to the new venture.

              https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Morris,_1st_Viscount_Nuffield

              http://www.mez.co.uk/lucas.html

              https://www.jaguarforums.com/forum/off-topic-6/collection-lucas-jokes-21723/

          3. NeilPost Bronze badge

            Re: No, the UK was never in the running

            Unfortunately Tesla does not need a Battery R & D Facility... esp. as Panasonic is their Battery Factory partner. They already delivering to scale for vehicles and other Tesla battery sales outlets.

            JLR should have been funding this and a massive scale production facility starting a decade ago in Coventry instead of fucking Ford Bridgend (legacy engine supplier) over and spaffing off £500m on an Internal Combustion Engine Factory In Wolverhampton. A strategic mistake on a New Coke scale.

      2. macjules Silver badge

        Re: No, the UK was never in the running

        Funny that you mention Dyson as, in a similar vein, Dyson has an R&D centre in Hullavington for battery technology. Mind you, I would probably trust a Dyson EV less than I might trust an Über killing machine autonomous vehicle - the only product that James Dyson makes that doesn't suck is his vacuum cleaner.

        1. DrXym Silver badge

          Re: No, the UK was never in the running

          Dyson gave up on their EV plans. Probably realised it was ever-so-slightly more difficult to design a new car than a vacuum cleaner.

          Personally I think there is far easier way they can get into the automotive space. Lots of cars brag about their branded sound systems, but how many have branded air conditioning systems? Dyson have an easy "in" there.

          1. 's water music Silver badge

            Re: No, the UK was never in the running

            Lots of cars brag about their branded sound systems, but how many have branded air conditioning systems? Dyson have an easy "in" there

            I'm not convinced that having air vents whose cost and noise levels are five to ten times more than any other brand but double as hand dryers is a compelling USP

          2. MachDiamond Silver badge

            Re: No, the UK was never in the running

            "Probably realised it was ever-so-slightly more difficult to design a new car than a vacuum cleaner."

            The risk/reward and investment/return ratios are also much different. If a vacuum cleaner doesn't sell, the company is out a £100,000 or so in tooling (maybe more) but if you fall flat after spending all of the money to get a car into production, you are pretty much back to waiting tables on Tuesday night in a village pub. Curtains, no flowers.

            1. macjules Silver badge

              Re: No, the UK was never in the running

              Or you simply go back to designing wheelbarrows.

      3. This post has been deleted by its author

      4. ForthIsNotDead
        Stop

        Re: No, the UK was never in the running

        Nonsense. The UK is an island. If your main market is the EU (which is much much larger than the UK) then why on earth would you choose to install your manufacturing base in the UK, with all the logistical issues of getting finished product to the market (i.e. Europe)?

        It's nonsense.

        I'll concede that *today*, with doubt around Brexit and tariffs etc. you'd have to be bonkers to think that the UK is a good bet for a *European* manufacturing base, but five or six years ago, with Brexit nothing more than a grumble, you'd still be bonkers simply for logistics reasons.

        UK manufacturing really only makes sense for UK markets.

        1. james_smith Bronze badge

          Re: No, the UK was never in the running

          The UK was a good bet for a European manufacturing base pre-Brexit, as shown by the number of companies who did base themselves here (Nissan for example). The reason being the number of ports for both exporting the results (much more efficient than shipping purely by road, even to parts of the EU) and for importing materials or parts.

          The UK was also attractive thanks to our piss poor employment rights compared to other major EU countries. Although that's somewhat tempered by the lower per-employee productivity of most UK workers compared to those in Germany for example.

          One of Bozo Johnson's cabinet blurted out how he couldn't wait to strip our remaining employment rights once Brexit no-deal happened. Despite the fact that UK labour costs would have to be miniscule to overcome the disadvantage of tarrifs for goods exported to the EU post Brexit.

          1. HelpfulJohn Bronze badge

            Re: No, the UK was never in the running

            "One of Bozo Johnson's cabinet blurted out how he couldn't wait to strip our remaining employment rights once Brexit no-deal happened. "

            This would not surprise me considering who the UKGov is made up of.

            "Despite the fact that UK labour costs would have to be miniscule to overcome the disadvantage of tarrifs for goods exported to the EU post Brexit."

            Don't worry about this one. Once our wages are low enough, the extra tariffs won't be a major detriment. Of course dropping our wages will kill UKland as a market but to the rich guys who own us this is a minor point. Getting stuff sold to USofA, Yurp and Asia is far more valuable. Vastly bigger markets.

        2. MachDiamond Silver badge

          Re: No, the UK was never in the running

          BMW does well with the Mini plant. It helps they have their own train that takes cars from the factory to the docks. In fact, that can be a more efficient way of getting cars to markets rather than putting them on a lorry and hauling them 8-10 at a time 20 hours.

          1. HelpfulJohn Bronze badge

            Re: No, the UK was never in the running

            Well, trains can haul many cars with one engine and, due to a recent innovation, they can even travel over land the entire route from UKland to Korea, China, Finland and Greece should they wish.

            For freight, trains may even be cheaper than lorries.

      5. caradoc

        Re: No, the UK was never in the running

        And much cheaper labour...

    2. Len

      Re: No, the UK was never in the running

      While I would agree that the UK is not one of the great manufacturing powerhouses of Europe an exception should be made for automotive. That happens to be an area where the UK does (or did?) pretty well so I can fully imagine that Tesla would have had the UK on a shortlist a couple of years ago, not just for R&D but even for production.

      1. batfink Silver badge

        Re: No, the UK was never in the running

        The Brexiteers' favourite economist openly said that the UK would have to lose its car industry.

      2. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

        Re: No, the UK was never in the running

        That happens to be an area where the UK does (or did?) pretty well

        And still does (especially in niche applications - like F1 - more F1 teams are based in the UK than anywhere else).

        We no longer have a native mass-market automotive manufacturer though (JLR might beg to differ but they make a tiny amount of cars compared to people like Ford and they are also now owned by Tata) - all the big car factories are owned by non-UK companies (Honda (for the moment), BMW, Nissan et. al.)

        If Brexit happens, we can expect those to fall to 0 - because (as someone has pointed out) better to pay tarrifs on the relatively few cars brought in rather than on the many cars exported to the EU.

        1. Cuddles Silver badge

          Re: No, the UK was never in the running

          "We no longer have a native mass-market automotive manufacturer though (JLR might beg to differ but they make a tiny amount of cars compared to people like Ford and they are also now owned by Tata) - all the big car factories are owned by non-UK companies (Honda (for the moment), BMW, Nissan et. al.)"

          You mean the JLR owned by Indian company Tata? I'm not sure they count as native any more than the others you mention. As far as I can tell, Aston Martin and McLaren are the only actual British-owned car companies that can claim production numbers even in the thousands.

    3. Sleep deprived
      Happy

      Re: No, the UK was never in the running

      The steering wheel would've been on the wrong side. Or is Autopilot making it unnecessary?

    4. DrBed
      Mushroom

      Re: No, the UK was never in the running

      > There's a lot that you can pin on Brexit, but not this

      FYI - check timeline - "totally unrelated" LOL

      https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/news/624/cpsprodpb/0DCC/production/_108123530_car.output-nc.png

      ( from https://www.bbc.com/news/business-49170387 )

      1. Cederic Silver badge

        Re: No, the UK was never in the running

        It's almost as though the world economies hit a ceiling in 2017 and global car sales started to fall.

        Almost.

        1. Robert Grant

          Re: No, the UK was never in the running

          It's almost as though the world economies hit a ceiling in 2017 and global car sales started to fall.

          Almost.

          They're building the factory in Europe instead of the UK because global car sales started to fall? It almost makes too much sense.

    5. thames

      Re: No, the UK was never in the running

      According to news reports in Canada (CBC), locating the plant in Berlin seems to be a quid pro quo for Germany's new electric vehicle subsidies announced a couple of days ago. The timing between that and the Tesla announcement is unlikely to be coincidental.

      Germany couldn't offer a direct subsidy to build the plant, but they could offer broader electric vehicle subsidies which Tesla will benefit from to a large degree. Tesla depends heavily on such subsidies for sales, and they tend to be in places with the largest subsidy programs. They have a high enough profile in the industry that they can negotiate subsidies directly with governments. They were almost certainly consulted by the German government on the new subsidy program, hence the coordinated announcements.

      If the UK wanted to bid for the new Tesla assembly plant, then they would have had to do so by topping Germany's subsidies. I suspect that the current government in the UK has no intention of getting in a subsidy war with Germany.

      1. martinusher Silver badge

        Re: No, the UK was never in the running

        Germany is a leading supplier of production equipment and industrial automation technology -- probably the leading supplier. A facility like the Gigafactory will need production machines and people to manage and service them, not people to build cars.

      2. MachDiamond Silver badge

        Re: No, the UK was never in the running

        "Tesla depends heavily on such subsidies for sales, and they tend to be in places with the largest subsidy programs."

        If you look at all of Elon's businesses, they are all in sectors with either subsidies or major government contracts.

        I feel sorry for German citizens if their government is going to extend subsidies to an American firm selling expensive cars. It's not like they don't have a few luxury car makers of their own. Maybe if those subsidies were for cars priced under 35,000 Euros.

        1. Kristian Walsh

          Re: No, the UK was never in the running

          Cars priced above €60,000 receive no subsidies at all under the new German scheme. The biggest gains are for buyers of vehicles priced under €40,000, and cars costing between €40,000 and €59,999 receive a smaller subsidy.

          The cheapest Tesla vehicle retails for €57,000, so most of the American company's offerings won't benefit from this scheme at all. The intended beneficiary is of course not Tesla, but rather Volkswagen, whose ID3 EV will cost around 30-35k, right in the sweet-spot for the grants.

          1. NeilPost Bronze badge

            Re: No, the UK was never in the running

            Tesla need to scale with a ‘Model 1’ aimed at the. Nissan Leaf/eGolf/eMini segment.

    6. Roland6 Silver badge

      Re: No, the UK was never in the running

      >There's a lot that you can pin on Brexit, but not this

      Brexit is just another nail in the coffin for US investment.

      If you are a US company, with a "Make America great" resident in the White House, I see no real added value in having a plant in a post-Brexit UK, however, having a plant inside the EU27...

      Given recent events and the decades old eurosceptic criticism of the EU, I suspect, for things to change it won't be sufficient for the UK to remain, it will have to adopt the Euro and many of the other things Brexiteers dislike...

      1. Teiwaz Silver badge

        Re: No, the UK was never in the running

        Brexit is just another nail in the coffin for US investment.

        Probably not the case once Boris and chums let the US Health companies in to prey on the NHS in exchange for a trade deal.

        That and their dodgy chicken practices.

        1. Roland6 Silver badge

          Re: No, the UK was never in the running

          >Probably not the case once Boris and chums let the US Health companies in to prey on the NHS in exchange for a trade deal.

          You are getting a little confused: investment is about US HQ'd businesses spending money on capital projects in the UK with little expectation of an early profitable return on the investment. The trade deal is all about letting US companies sell us their stuff on their terms at prices they dictate. Hence why all the concerns about dodgy (US) chicken...

    7. Sorry that handle is already taken. Silver badge

      Re: No, the UK was never in the running

      Whatever the case, it definitely didn't help

    8. IGotOut

      Re: No, the UK was never in the running

      Germany is the centre of manufacturing in Europe.

      Yeah, if you exclude companies such as VW, BMW and Porsche who use parts from outside Germany.

    9. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "The UK's economy relies on services."

      As long as you find someone to sell those services to....

      And it wasn't the "services" city to vote for Brexit....

    10. DrXym Silver badge

      Re: No, the UK was never in the running

      Well that's an odd way of looking at it. I wonder if you also use the "well we're not into manufacturing" as justification for the successive waves of automotive sector bad news that happened, completely by coincidence, in the last few years? The UK basically excluded itself from any chance of getting this factory through its self-inflicted situation.

      The UK could have made a compelling case for Tesla to have built there if it had the same will and self-interest as Germany. It's not some backwater lacking infrastructure. But Brexit pissed any chance of that happening down the drain.

    11. iron Silver badge

      Re: No, the UK was never in the running

      You'd be surprised just how much manufacturing goes on in the UK, especially in automotive. Successive governments since Thatcher have tried to kill UK manufacturing but never quite succeeded except in the eyes of the press and BBC.

  2. batfink Silver badge
    Trollface

    677km from Prum to Berlin

    Or, as Tesla owners would say: about 2.5 full charges.

    1. Bonzo_red

      Re: 677km from Prum to Berlin

      Are the seven hours "driving and recharging" time or just driving time?

      1. A.P. Veening Silver badge

        Re: 677km from Prum to Berlin

        For a Tesla it is pure driving time, for a good car with internal combustion engine it is "driving and lunching" time.

        1. A.P. Veening Silver badge

          Re: 677km from Prum to Berlin

          Why the downvote? It just is true, the range of a Tesla dramatically decreases if the speed comes much above 100 km/h. A car with an IC engine can do 150 to 160 KM/h without much of a problem and still have a decent range, while tanking is a lot quicker.

          1. seven of five

            Re: 677km from Prum to Berlin

            "If you speak the truth, have a foot in the stirrup."

            -turkish proverb (at least according to Civ 3)

            (though the time advantage probably comes from the massive amount of energy storeable in 70 litres of Diesel fuel, so no need to conserve.)

          2. Schultz
            Boffin

            Re: 677km from Prum to Berlin

            Any car will burn twice the fuel when going 150 km/h instead of 100. That's one big reason why a speed limit makes sense if you care about the environment.

            1. Orv Silver badge

              Re: 677km from Prum to Berlin

              The only real difference is pumping twice the fuel into a gas car is quicker than pumping twice the electricity into an EV.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Brexit ?

    Give me a break, Cadbury's moved production from the UK to Poland and JRL to Slovakia long before Brexit. If you want to build a factory in the UK, forget it as the price of land favours house building, production labour & energy costs are too high.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Bloody Poles. Staying at home and stealing our jobs.

      1. seven of five
        Joke

        Ah, so by cancelling Brexit, we can retain the freedom of movement in the EU, move to Poland and take back our jobs. They´ll never expect us to Blitz them like this...

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          >Ah, so by cancelling Brexit, we can retain the freedom of movement in the EU

          Sounds like a plan, and worked last time we had a right-wing Tory gov - what's Polish for Auf Wiedersehen Pet?

          1. Draco
            Headmaster

            That would be: Do widzenia Pet

            1. ForthIsNotDead
              Thumb Up

              They like their Z's don't they?

              I knew there'd be a 'Z' in there somewhere :-)

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Dont' forget that WTF moment when the EU gave money to Ford to close their Southampton van plant and move production to Turkey.

      1. MAF

        Please not the old Southampton chestnut...

        https://infacts.org/eu-not-paying-uk-firms-outsource/

        1. The Original Steve

          Re: Please not the old Southampton chestnut...

          An interesting article which gives a good comment and counter argument.

          Although I did raise an eyebrow at the way some facts were worded. Stating 70% of UK made cars are exported and half of those are sent to the EU somehow seems rather more alarming (given we're meant to be leaving the EU) compared to saying that less that 40% of UK made cars go to the continent. Personally if less that 50% to the EU markets then arguable would it not make more sense to be outside of it and take the hit whilst securing FTA's with the majority of the customers of the cars we make? Purely econmically speaking.

          Although when going to the website home page it kind of lost it's credibility. 5 seconds on the home page suggests it's a counter to the rabid nonsense sprouted by the Daily Mail. Whilst that's not in itself a bad thing, it does somewhat water down decent articles like the one you linked too as it's clearly just as biased as the pro-Brexit lot.

          1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

            Re: Please not the old Southampton chestnut...

            "An interesting article which gives a good comment and counter argument."

            Only if you enable javascript, otherwise it's just blank. Another useless site.

          2. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

            Re: Please not the old Southampton chestnut...

            >whilst securing FTA's with the majority of the customers of the cars we make

            That might be a bit tricky

            Dear Japan/USA/Korea, please take all our cars tariff free just because we aren't in the Eu anymore

          3. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Please not the old Southampton chestnut...

            Or the outside EU locations those cars go to already have a trade agreement with the EU which we are going to throw away and hope that we may be able to get a deal that is almost as good (due to our size it is unlikely to be better) after a period of 5~10 years.

            So we could lose free trade with the EU, lose trade deals already negotiated with those outside and ensure that manufacturing never steps onto the shores of Blighty again?

            Of course not, we'll use British spirit that single-handedly ruled the world and won two world wars. We'll have the EU paying us money to import our goods and the best trade deals in the world where everyone will be on the phone asking for us to please send our Cornish pasties to them and America begging the NHS to run the American Healthcare system.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        >>>Dont' forget that WTF moment when the EU gave money to Ford to close their Southampton van plant and move production to Turkey.

        Liar.

    3. Joe W Silver badge

      and Germany is oh so much cheaper? Pull the other one....

      1. A.P. Veening Silver badge

        and Germany is oh so much cheaper? Pull the other one....

        It isn't any more expensive either, but the quality is a lot better.

        1. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

          but the quality is a lot better

          Maybe at one point - not so much nowadays. It's not that we've improved - it's that Germany is now falling to the same minimum-price idea of manufacturing rather than over-engineering that prevails here.

          Which is why the reliability of marques like Mercedes and BMW has fallen through the floor.

          1. jospanner

            Blame the economic model that drives this trend.

          2. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

            > reliability of marques like Mercedes and BMW has fallen through the floor

            The ones made in Alabama by some non-union worker with two first names - perhaps.

            My "Made in Germany" BMW is rather nicely built

          3. batfink Silver badge

            There was a build problem with Mercs around the end of last century, as the then-bosses decided that cost-cutting was the way to go.

            However, when they realised the impact the resultant fall in reliability was having on reputation and sales, that was reversed.

            Not enough time yet elapsed since then to gauge the long-term effectiveness.

      2. Aussie Doc
        Windows

        They certainly seem to offer better subsidies for the likes of M Musk.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      " Cadbury's moved production from the UK to Poland and JRL to Slovakia long before Brexit."

      That was a direct result of Cadbury's being taken over by Kraft foods... It's entirely profit driven now, which is a long way from the original roots of the company, who generally tried to do the right thing for their staff.

    5. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

      Cadbury's moved production from the UK to Poland

      Lets not confuse the neo-liberal process of moving manufacturing to somewhere where labour and costs are cheap with 'lets not bother making anything in the UK since it'll cost a fortune to export".

  4. disgustedoftunbridgewells Silver badge

    So it's the liberal democrats and labour's fault with their intentional brexit delay.

    1. tiggity Silver badge

      @disgustedoftunbridgewells

      Some Conservatives themselves (e.g. ERG members such as Mogg ) kept blocking T May deals.

      With their DUP bribe giving them the extra votes from across the water, if Conservatives had whole heatedly backed T May deal(s) back in the day then it would have been sorted.

      Fault lies with Conservatives getting into scenario where no deal possible / very likely (depending how you interpret possibilities) and so in recent months government getting grief from MPs who want to explicitly stop possibility of no deal.

      .. apols if your comment was a joke, I browse with images disabled so do not see any joke icons etc.

      1. disgustedoftunbridgewells Silver badge

        I stopped reading at DUP bribe because it wasn't a DUP bribe.

        1. Claverhouse Silver badge

          Of course not: it was simply a generous bonus given to another party [ eg not in government, as then it would have been an Alliance ] in return for supporting the main Party with votes.

          Of course latterly the Tories managed to even screw that up.

          1. Wandering Reader

            "Of course not: it was simply a generous bonus given to another party "

            It wasn't given to the party, it was given to the Civil Service budget, and allocated between Health, Education and Infrastructure.

            Everyone approves of Health, Education and Infrastructure, I assume.

            1. batfink Silver badge

              Allocated by whom? Those trustworthy NI representatives in the DUP? I refer you to the "Cash for Ash" scandal as a measure of said trustworthiness.

            2. Robert Grant

              Everyone approves of Health, Education and Infrastructure, I assume.

              Hard to understand this. Of course people approve of those things, but not reallocating a billion quid to it purely for vote-buying. One assumes that billion was going somewhere useful beforehand as well.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          DUP? as in Assembler language?

        3. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          I stopped reading...

          There is the brexiteer argument in a nutshell.

          1. disgustedoftunbridgewells Silver badge

            Stopping reading when people lie? Yes.

            The DUP didn't get a penny.

            Northern Ireland got some money to spend on services. It wasn't a bribe to the DUP.

            1. BigSLitleP Silver badge

              It definitely wasn't a bribe. The DUP refused to partner up with the Conservatives and form a government until the 1 billion pounds was handed over, but it definitely wasn't a bribe.......

              Is Boris dead in a ditch yet?

              1. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

                Is Boris dead in a ditch yet?

                Hopefully his career is. I'd be somewhat amused[1] if he lost his seat at the election (unlikely, I know, but it's happened before).

                [1] Which is about as excited as I get nowadays..

              2. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

                He was near several perfectly suitable flooded ditches yesterday, but I can only assume he is too incompetent even to fall into one of them. I'd be shocked - *shocked!* - to find that he didn't tell the truth about his intentions.

        4. batfink Silver badge

          Bullshit. £1Bn for pork-barrelling handed over in direct exchange for a Confidence and Supply agreement.

          Walks like a duck, etc.

        5. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          "I stopped reading at DUP bribe because it wasn't a DUP bribe.”

          Quite right. It was Magic-Money-Tree dividend.

      2. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

        Fault lies with Conservatives getting into scenario

        Fault also lies with the fact that the principle of Brexit is utterly incompatible with the Good Friday Agreement.

        One establishes a hard border (with attendent taxes and tarriffs) and the other forbids a hard border and requires free movement. I'm sure that the DUP would *love* to see the back of the GFA (it challenges their One World Order of NI and implies that NI and RoI should be on good terms).

      3. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        "With their DUP bribe giving them the extra votes from across the water, if Conservatives had whole heatedly backed T May deal(s) back in the day then it would have been sorted."

        And our manufacturing sector would be further along with their packing and turning out the lights.

        1. osakajin

          I used to think that 9 years of tory greed would be enough to make people angry enough to choose the other lot. Apparently those folk who seem to be heading to put the tories in power for another 5 years really all need to end up homeless or dead in ditch to get the messsge.

          1. jospanner

            It is extremely depressing to watch.

            The fact that Corbyn is the most lied about leader of the opposition in history by the media should be an indicator as to who is pulling the strings.

          2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

            When the only real choice is Boris or Jezza? I can't even vote tactically here. If Labour put a monkey up, it'd win. Having said that, their huge margin has been decreasing over the last decade or so and it might encourage more non-voters out if they see that change is possible.

      4. P. Lee Silver badge

        They blocked the deal because it wasn't brexit. We don't need to give NI to Merkel in order to leave the EU.

        It should have gone as the EU first stated: leave first, then negotiate.

      5. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        "With their DUP bribe giving them the extra votes from across the water, if Conservatives had whole heatedly backed T May deal(s) back in the day then it would have been sorted."

        No, they wouldn't. Leave or remain was and is cross-party. The choices are not and never were aligned with party lines. The only way to pass any deal is via free votes for all MPs with a leave deal good enough to get the support. Previous votes on the deal have been overshadowed by the strong likelihood of a GE either before or immediately after Brexit. How many opposition MPs would want to be seen voting with the Tories with a GE around the corner? Getting a deal through after the impending GE will depend on the outcome. If one party gets enough of a majority that they can hold on for the next five years, opposition MP might feel more comfortable voting in favour of the winners.

    2. codejunky Silver badge

      @disgustedoftunbridgewells

      I had come here to say about the same except blame it not on parties but on remain politicians since the issue splits through parties.

      If the costs can be attributed to the uncertainty around brexit then it is the fault of not leaving yet. If the costs can be attributed to brexit then since we havnt left yet it must be due to not leaving yet. If the costs are attributed to a fantasy land that we have left and so the cause of brexit then its someone needing another therapy session.

      But of course this will somehow be the fault of the leave voter I am sure.

      1. Def Silver badge

        Re: @disgustedoftunbridgewells

        But of course this will somehow be the fault of the leave voter I am sure.

        Well... yes. Remain voters didn't vote to destroy the country and economy.

        1. codejunky Silver badge

          Re: @disgustedoftunbridgewells

          @Def

          "Well... yes. Remain voters didn't vote to destroy the country and economy."

          Neither did leave voters. Are you seriously of the opinion that more than half the voters are anarchists in one of the highest voting turn-outs in (30?) years?

          1. DontFeedTheTrolls Silver badge
            Mushroom

            Re: @disgustedoftunbridgewells

            "Remain voters didn't vote to destroy the country and economy."

            "Neither did leave voters"

            I know it was all just "Project Fear" but people were warned of the serious consequences that would be expected in the event of trying to leave the EU. There were degrees of consequence and risk, however so far Project Fear has pretty much been on track.

            So yes, Leave voters did vote to destroy the country and the economy. Perhaps in good faith they believed the Vote Leave et al campaigns that this was in the greater good?. i.e. the greater the wealth you have now the more good you'll get out of Brexit.

            1. codejunky Silver badge

              Re: @disgustedoftunbridgewells

              @DontFeedTheTrolls

              "but people were warned of the serious consequences that would be expected in the event of trying to leave the EU"

              Yup. 3 recessions yet to pass. To be put at the back of the 'queue' with the US. The end of western civilisation. No wonder it was called project fear. Such 'events' refusing to be wished into existence.

              "There were degrees of consequence and risk, however so far Project Fear has pretty much been on track."

              Eh? First we havnt left yet so actually the consequences of not leaving. The exception being things due on a leave result that while framed as bad by Carney were in fact the aims of the Treasury and BoE since 2008!

              "So yes, Leave voters did vote to destroy the country and the economy."

              Surely that would leave a lot of leave voters happy that remainers are wrecking the country by refusing the democratic result of leave. Uncertainty being almost a guarantee of economic trouble.

              "Perhaps in good faith they believed the Vote Leave et al campaigns that this was in the greater good?"

              I expect both sides voted for that objective even with differing views of how to achieve it.

              "i.e. the greater the wealth you have now the more good you'll get out of Brexit."

              And also the benefits to the poorer of the society and everyone else.

              1. John Smith 19 Gold badge
                WTF?

                "And also the benefits to the poorer of the society and everyone else."

                Ahhhh.

                Was that what Leave voters were voting for?

                Or do you mean that's what the "poorer of the society" were told by the likes of Cambridge Analytica so they would vote Leave?

                Because it's been a crock of s**t so far and the expected £70Bn shrinkage in the UK economy after 10 years outside the EU compared to BAU will make the govt of the day even keener to cut benefits to the "poorer of the society"

                Hmm. "Poorer of the society." That's not how native English speakers would express that idea.

                English not your first language codejunky ?

                1. codejunky Silver badge

                  Re: "And also the benefits to the poorer of the society and everyone else."

                  @John Smith 19

                  "Was that what Leave voters were voting for?"

                  Yes. That is why there are asterisks when there are claims of food prices rising for example *from the EU. If your suggesting leave voters (the majority of voters) voted to harm the country then surely you would say the same for remain. Personally I believe both sides voted for what they believed to be good for the country.

                  "Because it's been a crock of s**t so far"

                  Still in the EU

                  "and the expected £70Bn shrinkage in the UK economy after 10 years outside the EU"

                  Expected? According to remain that is 2 recessions that didnt happen and one somewhere in the future they will blame on brexit. A punishment budget doing the opposite of what is required of the business cycle. Back of the 'queue' (still makes me laugh) for a trade deal with the US.

                  "Hmm. "Poorer of the society." That's not how native English speakers would express that idea."

                  Shows how clueless you are then as I am a native speaker of England. If you dont realise people in England have their various ways of speaking (or writing) then maybe your not native English?

                  1. John Smith 19 Gold badge
                    Unhappy

                    "Shows how clueless you are then as I am a native speaker of England. "

                    And another interesting turn of phrase which I've never heard from any native speaker of the language.

                    Although it does remind me of some of the people I worked with at a multi national company that employed me.

                    Do you get paid by the line or the word for the length of your posts?

                    1. codejunky Silver badge

                      Re: "Shows how clueless you are then as I am a native speaker of England. "

                      @John Smith 19

                      "And another interesting turn of phrase which I've never heard from any native speaker of the language."

                      I am not sure if you dont talk to many people (outside your small area) or if you have no reasoned response and choose to attack me.

          2. Def Silver badge

            Re: @disgustedoftunbridgewells

            Are you seriously of the opinion that more than half the voters are anarchists in one of the highest voting turn-outs in (30?) years?

            No, of course not.

            But more than half the voters who turned up did vote to place the UK in a economical situation that is considerably worse than the one it was currently in. Not only that, but they were basically told as much at the time. So in that regard, you could argue they were anarchists. ;)

            1. codejunky Silver badge

              Re: @disgustedoftunbridgewells

              @Def

              "But more than half the voters who turned up did vote to place the UK in a economical situation that is considerably worse than the one it was currently in"

              How do you work that out? Democratically we would have left and you could try to blame the situation on the leave voters, but since we cant seem to apply the democratic result it is the lack of brexit causing this damage.

              1. Def Silver badge

                Re: @disgustedoftunbridgewells

                How do you work that out?

                By using simple logic and common sense. As a member of the EU the UK is a party to 36 free trade agreements already in force, an additional 10 trade agreements (with 44 countries) provisionally in force, two agreements signed (but not in force yet), and another four agreements (with 26 countries) negotiated but not yet signed.

                When the UK leaves the EU, it will lose *all* those trading partners over night. If the UK leaves the EU without a deal, it will additionally lose the ability to trade freely with the remaining 27 members of the EU.

                If you honestly believe that that represents a better economical situation than the UK currently enjoys, you're naive at best, and delusional at worst.

                Yes, the UK will be able to make its own trade agreements with those nations, but that will take time. A lot of time - decades, probably. And any agreements the UK does manage to make will be made by negotiating from a substantially worse position than that of the EU.

                You can cry and blame the lack of leaving on the economical impact of Brexit all you like, but at the end of the day that's simply ignoring the facts of the matter: Brexit is bad for the UK.

                1. codejunky Silver badge

                  Re: @disgustedoftunbridgewells

                  @Def

                  "When the UK leaves the EU, it will lose *all* those trading partners over night."

                  From the start you are wrong. A number of agreements are lined up to continue trade with our partners.

                  "If the UK leaves the EU without a deal, it will additionally lose the ability to trade freely with the remaining 27 members of the EU."

                  That bit is true. If the trading block is incapable of creating a trade agreement and the UK leaves without a deal after already meeting all the requirements for trade then yes we will not freely trade with the 27.

                  "If you honestly believe that that represents a better economical situation than the UK currently enjoys, you're naive at best, and delusional at worst."

                  Or you are wrong. So lets entertain that possibility. Leave a protectionist block of high tariffs and high regulation which relies on trade deals to cope in the world, and rejoin the world. That changes the landscape very quickly. The EU proper (Eurozone) is economically failing, and we are talking about uncoupling ourselves from the EU which is being dragged down by that. Looks a lot less delusional now! And thats only talking (broadly) economic reasons.

                  "Yes, the UK will be able to make its own trade agreements with those nations, but that will take time"

                  In a fair few cases being the minute after signing our leave of the EU.

                  "A lot of time - decades, probably"

                  Get your watch checked. Plus the US ready for a deal and I would hope others too if the gov has been doing their job.

                  "And any agreements the UK does manage to make will be made by negotiating from a substantially worse position than that of the EU."

                  That is garbage at best. A substantially stronger position of negotiating country to country vs 28 countries to country. Instead of 28 competing interests buggering an agreement and taking a long negotiating period and getting nothing its country to country.

                  "You can cry and blame the lack of leaving on the economical impact of Brexit all you like"

                  We havnt left yet. Uncertainty is economically damaging as economists of both sides would surely agree. Basically because it is economic knowledge that uncertainty is economically damaging. If you dont blame uncertainty for the damage then you are gonna have to make some realistic argument of what. And it cant be brexit because as remainers say- we aint left yet

                  1. Def Silver badge

                    Re: @disgustedoftunbridgewells

                    I didn't know that the UK had negotiated continuation agreements with other countries. That's a good thing, for sure. (Wouldn't be necessary if we just stayed in the EU, but I digress.) ;)

                    Leave a protectionist block of high tariffs and high regulation which relies on trade deals to cope in the world, and rejoin the world.

                    High tariffs aren't a symptom of the EU. They're a symptom of any economic region (or country) trying to protect its own markets and businesses. If they weren't the rest of the world would already be trading freely, which it isn't, and we wouldn't be hearing about the US/China trade war in the news, which we are.

                    As for "high regulation", I quite like knowing that the food I buy is not going to poison me or, worse, kill me. I like knowing that any medication I require has been rigourously tested and deemed safe for me to use. Regulations throughout the world are usually written in blood. I.e., they exist to prevent repeat incidents of whatever caused them to be required in the first place.

                    Which brings us on to the US. Do you really want the NHS broken up and sold to US conglomerates? Do you really want to eat lower quality, higher processed food imported from the US? Because I don't. One of the reasons there's no free trade deal with the US to date is because their food manufacturers have greatly reduced standards that are simply incompatible with the EU.

                    Reducing or abolishing any regulations to entice US trade will have severe repercussions when it comes to negotiating an EU trade deal. Trade with the EU accounts for 46% of UK exports at the moment, compared to just 19% with the US.

                    A substantially stronger position of negotiating country to country vs 28 countries to country. Instead of 28 competing interests buggering an agreement and taking a long negotiating period and getting nothing its country to country.

                    Or 28 economies representing a much larger financial interest vs one country. The UK is pretty insignificant when it comes to negotiating power. Except when dealing with the third world, of course.

                    If you dont blame uncertainty for the damage then you are gonna have to make some realistic argument of what.

                    Sure, uncertainty has been hugely damaging. But that uncertainty exists for a reason. Exiting the EU is particularly difficult for the UK because of Ireland and the Good Friday Agreement. Nobody knows how to solve that - well, unless the UK remains part of the EU customs region, which then begs the question, what is the point in leaving?

                    Leaving without a deal will be hugely damaging to the UK with regards to Northern Ireland. Leaving with a bullshit deal where NI remains in the customs union and GB doesn't is a joke (why do they get to stay and we don't?). Fully remaining in the EU customs union will kill any chance of a free trade agreement with the US and will reduce the UK to a Norway like situation where EU regulations have to be implemented with no say over what they actually are. (Ironically, Norway is the country that has implemented more EU regulations than any member state.)

                    I'm not saying the EU is perfect. Nothing is. But if we remain a full member, at least we have a better chance of changing the EU for the better. As we have done in the past. There are very few times in the past when the EU parliament has voted against the UK's position and interests. Regardless of what some people (read: idiots) might have you believe, we are a major contributor and negotiator within the EU.

                    1. codejunky Silver badge

                      Re: @disgustedoftunbridgewells

                      @Def

                      "I didn't know that the UK had negotiated continuation agreements with other countries. That's a good thing, for sure."

                      With all thats going on + chatterings from both UK and EU gov's I am not surprised. They change their minds like the wind changes direction :). Apparently there are a bunch of continuation agreements ready to be signed but ofc nothing can be signed until we are out (if it happens). There was also a lot of interest outside the EU to get deals on the table for when we leave but that was back in march. Hopefully they are still waiting for the day we leave.

                      "High tariffs aren't a symptom of the EU. They're a symptom of any economic region (or country) trying to protect its own markets and businesses."

                      That is true, but they are a choice and a bad one at that. As shown with Trump and China and the EU, tariffs are bad. Its one of the selling points for being the in-crowd of the EU between members. But it is exclusionary to the rest of the world. Trade tariffs have fallen massively since the days the EU is modelled on. High tariffs on Chinese steel for example was a huge cost on the US but we didnt suffer the same loss.

                      "I quite like knowing that the food I buy is not going to poison me or, worse, kill me"

                      Ok. I think we can all agree with that. Still no excuse for the far tighter regulations though. For example the cries of poisoning us with chlorinated chicken (the original cry was the chlorine was bad) forgot that salad is chlorine washed and that the US and EU food standards agencies vouch for its safety. I know the goalposts have moved now to 'conditions' of the chicken but only after the complaints were refuted with fact.

                      "Do you really want to eat lower quality, higher processed food imported from the US? Because I don't"

                      Then dont buy it. Who holds a gun to your head to buy it? Nobody. Compare that to the excessive regulation enforcing you buy from the promised land, but none of that foreign muck from the rest of the world. The only reason to ban it is because people would willingly buy it. You dont have to, nor I but who are we to dictate choice? If the EU go all demolition man and ban salt, alcohol and handshaking at what point is it absurd? Its absurd to ban peoples right to choose especially things deemed safe.

                      "Reducing or abolishing any regulations to entice US trade will have severe repercussions when it comes to negotiating an EU trade deal"

                      Thats the EU's fault then. When trading with any country in the world you meet the criteria of the importing country with your exports. You do not have to domestically implement such criteria otherwise nobody could trade. If the EU with the purpose of being 'pro trade' is so damned incompetent to fail at the one thing achieved throughout history globally then its not an advert for participating in the project. A fine example, we still drive on the left.

                      "Trade with the EU accounts for 46% of UK exports at the moment, compared to just 19% with the US."

                      We are trapped in the EU which has the express intention of making members interact more. Not only with incentives to trade within but to penalties of trade outside (quota, tariff and regulation).

                      "Or 28 economies representing a much larger financial interest vs one country. The UK is pretty insignificant when it comes to negotiating power. Except when dealing with the third world, of course."

                      Thats just wrong. One of the prime worries of the EU and brexit was the European located global financial centre which is in London. Leave without allowing financial trade and the EU takes a massive hit and we take a small hit. The EU is 28 competing interests screwing each other over by looking at individual interests which is the equivalent of everyone gets dumbed down to the lowest common denominator. On our own we have our interests to consider. Not protecting German manufacturing, French farms and 25 other very different economies.

                      "Sure, uncertainty has been hugely damaging. But that uncertainty exists for a reason."

                      True. It is due to not remaining nor leaving. Democratically we have elected to leave but the lack of will to do so is the problem. The problem in all simplicity is that leave is unilateral. They cannot stop us nor do we need any approval so there is no reason it cant be done. The GFA isnt an issue here, if there really is a rule saying no border then Ireland must abide by it. Both sides. EU can either break the agreement or (as the UK has already said) no hard border. It truly isnt a problem and if it is it shows the incompetence of the EU or a stubborn will to pretend it is.

                      "Leaving without a deal will be hugely damaging to the UK with regards to Northern Ireland."

                      The EU has made it clear that a no deal brexit would give the UK competitive advantage over the EU and that in the various agreements must not allow the UK to use them. The EU themselves acknowledge it.

                      "Fully remaining in the EU customs union will kill any chance of a free trade agreement with the US and will reduce the UK to a Norway like situation where EU regulations have to be implemented with no say over what they actually are."

                      Interestingly remaining in the EU will probably leave us in a similar position as our lack of solidarity with 'the project' will probably cause them to marginalise the UK and since we seem to afraid to leave we can sustain a kicking. Hell remainers might even say we deserve it (as has been said about certain EU actions so far).

                      Most importantly if the belief is we are trapped and cannot leave for whatever reasons is actually a solid reason to leave while it is such a unilateral option. Otherwise the country has been conquered/sold and so have we. If its a voluntary project then the democratic vote is in, we leave. If we are not a democratic country then it makes no difference what we want and that will upset remainers and leavers as time goes on.

                      "But if we remain a full member, at least we have a better chance of changing the EU for the better"

                      I remember the remain campaigns being wide and varied with the idea of changing the EU being one of them. Except the EU demonstrated they didnt want to be ruled by us. And why would they, we dont want to be ruled by them. Cameron went limply with his damp squib demands and was sent packing. And there are 27 of them, in or destined to join the EU proper and it is sinking under severe economic mismanagement. That is a lot we would have to change and we cant change it. The French president was elected on that promise and even he is finding out how the project doesnt like change. Much simpler to change the UK for the better.

                      "Regardless of what some people (read: idiots) might have you believe, we are a major contributor and negotiator within the EU."

                      That is true. The contribution part making some of the good arguments for leaving (not only do we contribute money but a lot of the EU rights were brought up by matching UK rights).

          3. james_smith Bronze badge

            Re: @disgustedoftunbridgewells

            Are you seriously of the opinion that more than half the voters are anarchists in one of the highest voting turn-outs in (30?) years?

            No, but based on the conversations I've had with every leaver I've met, they're all ignorant of economics and very susceptible to bollocks printed by the likes of the Daily Mail. One example, seeing as the main political parties are focusing on immigration today ... 80% of immigration to the UK is from outside the EU, so how lowering migration tied to leaving the EU? Answer is that it isn't.

            1. codejunky Silver badge

              Re: @disgustedoftunbridgewells

              @james_smith

              "No, but based on the conversations I've had with every leaver I've met, they're all ignorant of economics"

              Thats understandable, most people are fairly ignorant of economics regardless of voting leave or remain. The doosies in the remain campaign for example providing solid ground to call it project fear.

              "and very susceptible to bollocks printed by the likes of the Daily Mail."

              Just as bad as those Guardian readers. Reading across a broad selection of media is pretty much a requirement to dig toward the facts being reported.

              "80% of immigration to the UK is from outside the EU, so how lowering migration tied to leaving the EU? Answer is that it isn't."

              I think you just shot down a lot of remainers there while upsetting some leavers. A fair points based system being very different from the poor implementation of importing from the promised land. The bit that irks me being that a number of friends worldwide want to come here and either do so as students or cant seem to get in, unless they are from the EU- they get special treatment.

              1. Roger Mew

                Re: @disgustedoftunbridgewells

                Actually you are correct, all the universities have done various things and it seems that in general a low IQ means a Brexit voter and over 100 is almost always a reamainer. What does that say! Unless they have a financial axe to grind eg Reece Mogg many millions in the event of Brexit!

            2. John Smith 19 Gold badge
              Unhappy

              " Leave without allowing financial trade and the EU takes a massive hit"

              I think you have that exactly backwards.

              It's the UK's access to the rest of the European finance market that's crippled.

              That's the reason for various large UK financial institutions moving staff to Dublin and Frankfurt, or German banks moving staff back to Germany.

              And of course establishing of Rees Moggs subsidary in Dublin.*

              He may be delusional about the real level of power the UK swings in a post colonial world but he's not stupid.

              1. codejunky Silver badge

                Re: " Leave without allowing financial trade and the EU takes a massive hit"

                @John Smith 19

                "I think you have that exactly backwards."

                You might think that but yet from within the EU and UK it has been worked out. It isnt about financial markets accessing the customers, its the customers who need to access the financial markets. And London is a global financial centre because thats where the people are to do it. That is why the EU unilaterally decided it would allow continued access to London for its member countries.

                "It's the UK's access to the rest of the European finance market that's crippled"

                Ok. So the global financial centre is here in London and the EU walls off their smaller financial markets (which is bypassed with brass plates in some cases).

                "That's the reason for various large UK financial institutions moving staff to Dublin and Frankfurt, or German banks moving staff back to Germany."

                By German bank if you mean Deutsche bank that isnt a brexit issue, its a struggling bank. The subsidiaries situation is amusing in irritating Junker who wanted to woo the banks away from the UK and all he gets is some brass plates. This highlights some of the EU protectionism but their fear of losing UK access demonstrating which way the dependency goes. About 10% of the city (so I have read) is dependent on the 'passporting' access to the EU. A serious part of the City argument debunked a while ago-

                https://www.forbes.com/sites/timworstall/2016/09/24/spouting-nonsense-lse-boss-rolet-says-100000-clearing-jobs-at-risk-from-brexit/#36afde442f8d

                "And of course establishing of Rees Moggs subsidary in Dublin.*"

                I was posting questions about this earlier on this thread with james_smith-

                Did they? From my understanding they opened a fund there. That is not moving the business and it has to comply with regulatory requirements for tax and regulation reasons which is why a fund for Ireland would be set up in Ireland.

      2. jospanner

        Re: @disgustedoftunbridgewells

        Play stupid games, win stupid prizes.

        1. codejunky Silver badge

          Re: @disgustedoftunbridgewells

          @jospanner

          "Play stupid games, win stupid prizes."

          Something that amuses me greatly with such polarised topics is that with a statement like that I have no idea to which side it refers. Both sides believing it true from their perspective.

      3. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: @disgustedoftunbridgewells

        "I had come here to say about the same except blame it not on parties but on remain politicians since the issue splits through parties."

        Well done, you are almost there. Parliament is reflecting the will of the people. There is a majority for leave but, like the people, not all leavers want the same type of leave. Last week the BBC did an article on it and compared the results of a number of polls, all of which showed pretty much the same thing. Based on current conditions, it's split roughly 3 ways for No Deal, Deal, and remain.

        1. codejunky Silver badge

          Re: @disgustedoftunbridgewells

          @John Brown (no body)

          "There is a majority for leave but, like the people, not all leavers want the same type of leave"

          It would be interesting if the same poll was made (people and parliament) of the type of remain they want. That would be extremely illuminating for some I expect.

          1. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

            Re: @disgustedoftunbridgewells

            Unfortunately, you are right about "what type of remain" , now. At the time of the referendum, I do t think there was much difference across the board, i.e. keep things as they are. Now, with the possibility that remaining would require a change to the very advantageous position the UK had, there ate indeed a number of scenarios. Personally, I think all the options for remain and leave are all shit, and all because of a tiny difference indistinguishable from noise.

  5. Any other name

    Berlin is an interesting choice of city, given that engineering (and other) salaries are naturally higher in the capital ...

    Actually, the salaries and the cost of living in Berlin are still noticeably lower than in large cities in the western provinces of the country (although the cost of living has been raising rapidly, so it is no longer the bargain it used to be). This is particularly noticeable for those covered by the public-sector tariffs and large-union contracts, since Berlin belongs to the "new" provinces, which have lower salaries.

    1. Charlie Clark Silver badge

      It's also not in Berlin but in Brandenburg and the federal government has recently ear-marked wads of cash for Brandenburg to help transitioning away from coal mines. And Germany has decided to extend and increase subsidies for electric cars. Of course, this could just be a coincidence.

      1. baspax

        What a shocker, right?

        German Government ...

        * recognizes social and economic upheaval of closing massive coal mining industry

        * has a good think what to do about it

        * creates plan to attract to attract high tech renewable energy jobs by

        ** building electric charging infrastructure

        ** increasing demand for electric vehicles by pumping subsidies into market (lower prices, higher demand)

        ** creating incentives for renewable tech companies to relocate and/or invest

        And then suddenly, to everyones suprise, it works! And all the "conservative" and "market driven" commenters go off the deep end.

        This, my friends, is called Industrial Policy and the Germans are eating your lunch and drinking your milkshake. Enjoy Brexit.

        1. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

          Re: What a shocker, right?

          The UK doesn't do "policy" anymore. We have a sort of Agile decision-making - break things and move jobs quickly.

    2. MachDiamond Silver badge

      "Actually, the salaries and the cost of living in Berlin are still noticeably lower than in large cities in the western provinces of the country"

      Ok, now add 10,000 jobs in the area and watch housing costs skyrocket. Property owners will scramble to chuck out their current tenants and upgrade their properties so they can get premium rents. People may also move out of the area when the prices go up and flippers will go mad renovating homes to resell homes at the top of the market. They better hope that the public infrastructure can absorb the increases.

      1. Any other name

        Ok, now add 10,000 jobs in the area and watch housing costs skyrocket.

        Realistically, 10,000 jobs, especially if spread over a few years (as they inevitably will be), is not such a major thing for a city of 3.5 million. It would be nice to have for sure, and it will add to the population pressure - but Berlin has been growing by close to 30,000 per year for the past ten years, so it would not be completely unprepared.

        Furthermore, the reported location of the new gigafactory is east of the city proper (Grünheide, if you care), rather by the forever-under-construction BER airport (it is close as the crow flies, but a few strategically-paced rivers and lakes mean that the road distance is well over 30km). That area is somewhat economically depressed, and could do with a large new employer. The property prices are also much lower than in Berlin proper, and there is a lot of serviced space for residential develoment. If it comes about, I'd say it is going to be a neutral or positive development for the vast majority.

  6. Claverhouse Silver badge

    "Brexit had made it too risky to put a Gigafactory in the UK."

    Fair enough.

    1. Blitheringeejit
      Paris Hilton

      Giga-ty

      Yes, we don't want those forriners coming over here and manufacturing their gigas on our already-overcrowded island. We had enough trouble when we ourselves used to have a big manufacturing base for megas.

  7. Dapprman

    Is Musk aware of the strength of the unions and employment laws in Germany ?

    Considering the US factories are union free and the constant rumours of poor treatment of staff and high accident rates, one would hope Musk has done decent research in to placing a factory in a heavily unionised country such as German (Netherlands, Belgium and France also have over strong unions) rather than Italy, Spain or Portugal where they are weaker, salaries are lower and land is also cheaper.

    1. MiguelC Silver badge

      Re: Is Musk aware of the strength of the unions and employment laws in Germany ?

      I don't know about that, the automotive industry in those countries is strongly unionised. Volkswagen and Peugeot factories in Portugal and Spain have had production regularly stopped not only for salary and vacation bargaining but also because of internal power struggles between traditional unions and local workers groups, most of them leading to management yielding to their workforce's requests (at least in part).

      1. Dapprman

        Re: Is Musk aware of the strength of the unions and employment laws in Germany ?

        @ MiguelC Perhaps a selling point for the UK is comparatively weaker unions :D

        1. jospanner

          Re: Is Musk aware of the strength of the unions and employment laws in Germany ?

          Yay! We're the best at being fcked over!

    2. John Mangan

      Re: Is Musk aware of the strength of the unions and employment laws in Germany ?

      He probably couldn't wait for the full post-brexit labour deregulation in the UK. And then the tariffs . . . .

    3. Charlie Clark Silver badge

      Re: Is Musk aware of the strength of the unions and employment laws in Germany ?

      He's probably fully aware of this and the long holidays. But also of the high productivity of skilled German workers. though it might be a struggle to find enough of these in the region. This is in contrast to the low-skilled, and easily replaceable, workers that Amazon likes to use in its warehouses.

    4. don't you hate it when you lose your account Bronze badge

      Re: Is Musk aware of the strength of the unions and employment laws in Germany ?

      Totally agree, What was he thinking. Any reasonable person, like yourself, would build the factory in a country where deaths among the child workers (who should obviously be paid in washers) can be ignored with no possibility of any sort of law suit. Makes obvious business sense.

  8. JohnMurray

    Tesla Discloses US Revenues Collapsed 39%

    Automotive revenues plunged 12% to $5.4 billion.

    Energy and storage revenues ticked up less than 1% to $402 million.

    “Services and other” revenues jumped by 68% to $548 million.

    https://wolfstreet.com/2019/10/29/tesla-discloses-us-revenues-collapsed-39-americans-sour-on-its-cars-pent-up-demand-exhausted/

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I'm not sure why a US company would want to set up manufacturing in the UK when they'll be able to export here tariff free and without having to worry about EU regulations etc. ( lets hope the fabled trade deal doesn't allow them to sue the government because we drive on the left ).

    US finance will be expanding here, now that we're set to dodge the stricter rules on tax dodging etc that the EU are bringing in next year.

    Also no worries about the WTO as the US are in the process of closing down its judgement/enforcement capability.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Auto Express

    Fake news.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Auto Express

      sad

  11. This post has been deleted by its author

  12. AnotherBoringUsername

    It really doesn't matter what one individual company says.

    Brexit is clearly bad for Britain (that's if Britain even stays together in the aftermath) and ensures we'll essentially become a vassal state as Rees-Mogg (rather ironically) put it.

    Not only will we no longer have the bargaining power of a big bloc, businesses will still have to follow almost all the EU rules in order to trade with them, rather than having different production processes for different regions and thereby becoming far more inefficient and uncompetitive, and on top of that will have the increased logistical problems that come from being outside the free trade area of your nearest mass-market.

    It's a really really stupid move that all stems from politicians desire to blame anyone bar themselves for Britain's problems and the gullible public and their xenophobia lap it up.

    1. james_smith Bronze badge

      Rees-Mogg is going to do very well out of Brexit. He's already moved his business to Dublin, and last time he shorted the pound it ended up paying for his £5,000,000 house.

      1. codejunky Silver badge

        @james_smith

        "He's already moved his business"

        Did he move his business? From what I had read was the legal requirements set up for protectionism required the EU fund to be run from Ireland but that is not the business but the implementation of one of the investment funds. Not that I looked in detail.

        1. james_smith Bronze badge

          Re: @james_smith

          Nope, no such thing as "legal requirements". His firm, Somerset Capital Management, moved to Dublin on the advice of their legal counsel because of the (and I quote) "financial uncertainties" that Brexit would bring.

          1. codejunky Silver badge

            Re: @james_smith

            @james_smith

            "His firm, Somerset Capital Management, moved to Dublin"

            Did they? From my understanding they opened a fund there. That is not moving the business and it has to comply with regulatory requirements for tax and regulation reasons which is why a fund for Ireland would be set up in Ireland.

  13. ratfox Silver badge
    Meh

    "the as-yet-unopened Willy Brandt Airport"

    *OUCH*

  14. MachDiamond Silver badge

    It's not Brexit Per Se

    It's more that Brexit isn't done and there is massive uncertainly about how it will eventually shake out. Once it's completed or at least well underway, it's hard for businesses to make plans.

    1. nijam

      Re: It's not Brexit Per Se

      > It's more that Brexit isn't done and there is massive uncertainly

      Once brexit is "done" (and so are we), we will look back on the last two-plus years of "uncertainty" as a golden age.

  15. MachDiamond Silver badge

    Money to pay for the plant

    To date, I haven't seen a "funding secured" statement from Elon. Tesla has never made any annual profits and is already carrying a huge amount of debt so they are going to need somebody to step up with a big fat loan to build the new plant. The Shanghai plant is being financed by China with some hefty guarantees on Tesla's part. If they don't do well, that plant will be foreclosed and allocated to a domestic auto maker. I can't tell which end of the bet China is taking. Do they expect Tesla to do well and they get a load of taxes or do they expect Tesla to default whereupon they get a shiny new(ish) EV plant and a whole bunch of trained workers and middle management? It could be argued convincingly either way.

  16. Roger Mew

    Actually before the stupid shoot yourself in the foot Brexit vote, it was. The reason, Cambridge. However the boffins that would have been employed will also go to Germany. Many other companies will also be thinking seriously as well. If Brexit goes ahead then it has to be realized that the UK for hi tech businesses is going to be a no no. OK lets look at the reasons. The EU universities will have the pick of the EU countries and visa versa for the students. So the opportunity to cherry pick for both the Universities and the students is higher. Worse, the UK has a surfeit of lower IQ inhabitants. That can be seen as many cannot understand that brexit will destroy the UK. Forget the food, it is the brain drain that will hit. The people that will make money will be the likes of Reece Mogg and Boris. The UK has little or no engineering base, it has all been financial services. Even the Fishermen have not realised that the fishing areas are going to be severely curtailed worse their normal export areas eg France and Spain will not be buying from the remnants of the uk. It will be a sad day for the uk if brexit happens. Now think about the NHS many medics are leaving and going back to their home countries. Never mind you can train the various unemployed to be brain surgeons etc. cant you. (Well no actually!)

  17. BiffoTheBorg

    Reuters headline yesterday "German automation talent powers Musk's battery move to Europe". Model 3 production last year was saved by 6 plane loads of German robots and "Made in Germany" Teslas is viewed as a big plus. Also Germany has announced huge subsidies for battery development in Germany.

  18. HelpfulJohn Bronze badge

    Fairy godfather?

    "Musk said last night the new European Gigafactory battery facility would be based in the Berlin 'burbs, close to the site of the as-yet-unopened Willy Brandt Airport at Berlin Brandenburg. "

    Hmmm, maybe Ol'd Musky could buy, complete and actually *use* the airport? If he made a deal with Apple, who seem to have loads of loose cash lying around not doing much, to supply them with back-up battery packs and things he might even not need to spend much of his own funds in doing so.

  19. Orv Silver badge

    We had no way of staying afloat

    We had to leave on the ferry boat

    Economic refugees

    On the run to Germany...

  20. codejunky Silver badge

    Hmm

    Another remainer threat hitting the dust-

    https://www.continentaltelegraph.com/brexit/airbus-chief-makes-obvious-statement-of-obviousness-about-brexit-obviousness/

    1. John Smith 19 Gold badge
      Unhappy

      "https://www.continentaltelegraph.com/"

      So, another Leave propaganda site then.

      1. codejunky Silver badge

        Re: "https://www.continentaltelegraph.com/"

        @John Smith 19

        "So, another Leave propaganda site then."

        Again you dont challenge the information, you cry propaganda. No reasoned rebuttal? No thought? Nothing of value to add?

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