Jack Semple, Secretary of EAMA, has provided an update on this Bill which is going through parliament. The Retained EU Law (Revocation and Reform) Bill is expected to go to the House of Lords in late January, where it will face further scrutiny and proposed amendments. It is evident that there remains considerable uncertainty surrounding the impact of the Bill.
Retained EU law that relates to international treaties and that requires primary legislation to be changed will not be changed by the end of next year, according to assurances to the CBI. It is to be hoped that ministers will make a clear public statement on that in the New Year.
Also, EAMA has noted that there appears to be a lack of clarity as to what would require primary legislation and what could be changed by Statutory Instrument (SI). Views on that point seem to differ, even among civil servants looking at what retained EU law should be changed. EAMA is urging clarity from ministers on this issue, as well as more detail as to the process for considering reforming or revoking retained EU law. There needs to be consultation with industry, sufficient to make clear the benefits and costs of changes.
EAMA is proposing an amendment be made to the Bill to change the position to retained EU law that has not been overlooked by civil servants. At present, it is envisaged that such laws will fall away at the end of next year, even though no consideration of revocation had been made. It would be better if the default was that such laws remained, to be scrapped only after a conscious decision to do so, EAMA argues.
Separately, EAMA is pressing HM Treasury and BEIS for clarity on what the chancellor had in mind when he said, in his autumn statement, that there would be reform to retained EU laws related to advanced manufacturing, which he identified as one of five growth sectors. It is far from clear what is meant by advanced manufacturing and what laws are to change.
Government is under intense pressure from hard-line Brexiteers to move faster and further away from the EU.
Miles Roberts, chief executive of DS Smith, Britain’s largest packaging firm, said it would be “extremely helpful” for manufacturers if the government aligned regulations “wherever possible” with EU rules to ease trade. “The UK economy is one of the weakest places for manufacturers now,” he said in the latest company report. (Source: Financial Times)
We welcome comment from members. You can send these directly to Jack Semple at EAMA (email: [email protected]) and it would be useful if you could copy us into any input you might send (email: [email protected]).