Just days after the U.K.’s trade secretary branded the country “too lazy and too fat,” Britain’s leading business body has downgraded its U.K. growth forecasts.
The British Chambers of Commerce added insult on Monday to injury caused by the pro-Brexit Trade Secretary Liam Fox’s remarks over the weekend Saturday by predicting gross domestic product growth of 1.8 percent in 2016, 1 percent in 2017 and 1.8 percent in 2018.
The BCC’s forecasts come in the wake of the vote to leave the European Union (EU) and were lowered from previous robust estimates of 2.2 percent growth this year, 2.3 percent in 2017 and 2.4 percent in 2018.
In its first economic forecast since the EU referendum in June, the BCC said that weaker consumer spending and a large fall in investment were the main reasons for the downgrade. The U.K. has yet to formally trigger the exit process with the EU, causing uncertainty over the real effect that a Brexit will have on business confidence and consumption.