Tory MP says Brexit is benefiting her town because new bureaucracy is creating jobs

The Conservative MP for Dover has claimed that Brexit is benefiting her town because new border bureaucracy is creating jobs there.

Natalie Elphicke said the work enforcing new red tape on goods passing through the town was a “Brexit divided”.

She characterised the £100 million cost to the public purse of two new inspection facilities as an “investment” in her constituency by the government.

Two large new sites are required because leaving the EU has added new frictions to trade between Britain and the continent.

Vast armies of inspectors and experts are needed to check cargo which was previously able to flow freely.

The red tape has contributed to a record fall in exports to the bloc, which were down 12 per cent between January and December of last year compared to the previous year.

But representing the change as a win, Ms Elphicke told the BBC’s Newsnight programme: “Here in Dover and Deal we’ve already been benefiting from the so-called Brexit dividend.

“We’ve had £100 million invested in our border facilities here. It’s going to bring with it 650 extra jobs.”

The two facilities will be at Bastion Point and in Whitfield.

Brexit has had other effects on the town, some of which appear to be less positive.

Last month Conservative MP Huw Merriman, a member of the transport select committee, reportedly stepped in human faeces while on a fact-finding missing to look at disruption to trade.

The new bureaucracy and checks have created vast tailbacks of lorries, and the lack of adequate facilities has led to some desperate lorry drivers defecating by the roadside.

Speaking to the same programme Ms Elphicke said the problems were not caused by Brexit but by “Brussels bureaucracy”.

“There was Brussels bureaucracy before we left, it’s no surprise that it continues,” she said.

“That red tape is really a challenge for business and I work with local businesses, and I work with a cabinet office and it’s essential that we actually get a grip of this.”

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