There will be no “Armageddon” if Britain fails to agree a Brexit deal with the European Union, Downing Street has insisted.
Whitehall officials are reported to have drawn up three different scenarios in the event that the UK leaves the EU without an agreement with Brussels.
According to The Sunday Times, these include mild and severe scenarios of no deal, while a further scenario is known as “Armageddon”.
Under this, Britain would run short of medicines, food and fuel within two weeks of Brexit taking effect.
Addressing the claims, Theresa May’s official spokesman said such projections were “completely false”.
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He added: “We know that none of this will happen. We have always been clear we are planning for all scenarios and we will be fully prepared.
“We are equally clear that we are working towards a deal because it’s in the interests of both sides.”
The documents are said to have been written for the Inter-Ministerial Group on Preparedness by civil servants at the Department for Exiting the EU, Department of Health and Social Care and Department for Transport.
According to The Sunday Times, they were leaked by officials concerned by Brexiteers’ confidence about the UK’s prospects if it leaves the EU without a deal.
A source told the newspaper: “In the second scenario, not even the worst, the port of Dover will collapse on day one.
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“The supermarkets in Cornwall and Scotland will run out of food within a couple of days, and hospitals will run out of medicines within two weeks.”
They added: “You would have to medevac medicine into Britain, and at the end of week two we would be running out of petrol as well.”
Mrs May is due to meet top business figures at Downing Street amid concerns over the progress of negotiations.
A white paper on Brexit may be published before the next summit of EU leaders later this month, with Number 10 saying it was “not putting a time frame on it”.
In an indication of the concern in Europe at the lack of movement in the talks, Germany’s top Brexit diplomat played down expectations about the European Council meeting on 28 and 29 June.
“Not many are expecting very much now,” Peter Ptassek said.
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“If this is so, October would then have to solve all problems [withdrawal, NI, governance, future…] in one go. Odds still unclear.”
Meanwhile, Home Secretary Sajid Javid has issued a strong warning about the risk of weakening UK-EU security ties, saying it would be “wrong and reckless” to advocate any “unnecessary reduction” in co-operation.