Ex-prime minister returns to the fray – again – to make a contested claim about the vaccine roll-out.
On the third anniversary of Brexit, Boris Johnson has attempted to paint the withdrawal from the EU as a major boost for the UK – but immediately faced pushback over a questionable claim.
Taking to Twitter, the former prime minister urged people to “shrug off all this negativity and gloom-mongering” about Brexit despite dire warnings about the UK economy.
On the same day, the International Monetary Fund said Britain’s productivity will be worse than every other major country in 2023. Even Russia – hit by swingeing economic sanctions by the global community due to its invasion of Ukraine – will do better, the IMF said.
Undeterred, the man who formally led the UK out of the bloc promised the “opportunities are huge”.
“Let’s shrug off all this negativity and gloom-mongering that I hear about Brexit. Let’s remember the opportunities that lie ahead, and the vaccine roll-out proves it,” he said.
In a social media video, he insisted the UK’s coronavirus vaccination roll-out was as rapid as it was because “we’d taken back control” of the Medical Health Regulation Agency (MHRA).
“We were able to license that vaccine faster than any other European country and that gave us a crucial edge,” he said.
“So today, on Brexit Day, as we look back at that vaccine roll-out, let’s also look forward to all the other ways in which we can change our country and our economy for the better.”