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Business

OECD wades into Brexit debate

The OECD's general secretary has warned Britain that a Brexit scenario would not be good for the country economically. He said the company of fellow Europeans remained a prerequisite for better business deals.

Ahead of an official presentation of a Brexit study, the secretary general of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), Angel Gurria, told BBC Radio on Wednesday that an exit from the European Union would hit British workers hard.

Leaving the EU would cost an average working-class Brit the equivalent of a month's salary by 2020, he claimed.

"We made a whole series of calculations and we came out saying Brexit is a tax; it's equivalent to roughly missing on one month's income within four years and then it carries on and there's a consistent loss," Gurria warned.

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"Out" campaigners in the UK have insisted the Britain's economy would flourish outside the EU by saving annual contributions to the bloc, freeing itself of red tape and allowing it to strike its own independent trade deals.

But Gurria told them "there's no kind of deal that could go better by yourselves than it would in the company of the Europeans."

The OECD is not the first major economic body that's positioned itself in

the Brexit debate ahead of the June 23 referendum

in the UK. Earlier this month, the International Monetary Fund said a Brexit would deal a damaging blow to Britain and the global economy.

hg/cjc (Reuters, AFP)

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