Ministers facing calls for more Brexit transparency after the General Election

Mark Sands
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The UK will head to the polls on 8 June. (Source: Getty)

Ministers are facing a new call to commit to more Brexit transparency, and reveal goals for EU negotiations immediately after the election.

The European Commission met yesterday to formally authorise the start of negotiations with the UK, rubber-stamping priorities for the talks.

And with the process set to formally begin soon after the election, the Institute of Directors is leading calls for more detailed disclosures.

Top of the list is an impact assessment for a “no deal” scenario, in which the UK shifts to World Trade Organisation trading rules and guidance for businesses to be published by summer 2018.

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The IoD is calling for a detailed appraisal that could provide analyses for sectors such as manufacturing and the City.

In addition, it is requesting further detail on negotiating objectives, covering issues like the European Research Area, the European Enterprise Network and student exchange programme Erasmus.

And drafts of forthcoming customs and immigration bills should also be published for consultation.

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The government previously published a Brexit white paper in February, laying out Prime Minister Theresa May’s commitment to leaving the European Single Market and Customs Union.

IoD head of EU and trade policy Allie Renison said: “It would be better if the next government was as up-front as possible about their vision of Brexit.

“The EU has been clear about how it sees the process panning out, so after the election whoever is in No. 10 should quickly produce their own detailed objectives.

“We believe there is enough common ground, and good will, on both sides for the talks to be constructive. But more emphasis needs to be placed on the desired shape of our future relationship, rather than just reiterating red lines.”

The IoD is also pushing for the next chancellor to allocate funding to boost staff numbers in at HM Revenue and Customs, and for businesses to be offered either vouchers or tax breaks to help support strategic advice.

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