Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has spoken about Britain after the country leaves the EU ahead of a policy speech to be given today.
Speaking on ITV and Radio 4, he discussed the single market, employment rights, and the free movement of people in Europe.
Corbyn said that unscrupulous employers such as Mike Ashley were destroying working conditions for people in Britain and the priority of his government would be to address “undercutting and exploitation.”
In response to the question of accepting free movement of people, he said, “If the EU, as is, says access to the single market requires the continuation of free movement, then there’s a choice to be made.
“I would say we have to end undercutting and exploitation. That would in turn probably affect numbers. But I would say economically we’ve got to be able to trade with Europe.
“There is a big economic decision that’s got to be made then.
“If we want to retain jobs in this country, if we want to retain the trading nature of our economy and the ability to export to Europe, then a deal has to be done with the EU in order to achieve that.”
German Chancellor, Angela Merkel has repeatedly said that to gain access to the single market then the free movement of people has to be allowed.
Corbyn then pinpointed the issue with free movement. He said, “The point I am making in the speech today is that migrant workers are recruited to undercut and undermine working conditions in this country. There has to be a clear definition that we protect the working conditions and wage levels that are here.
“Some companies – particularly in the construction industry – are making a fortune out of getting rid of workers in this country on one set of pay and conditions and bringing in others to replace them. That creates awful tensions in those communities.”
Mr Corbyn makes his policy speech later today.