Sunak rejects report that plan to scrap thousands of EU laws will undermine Brexit deal

Press quote (The Daily Express)
31 March 2023

Rishi Sunak has rubbished the claim that the Government's plan to scrap thousands of EU laws would undermine the Windsor Framework. The Retained EU Law Bill will see thousands of laws inherited from the Europen Union expire automatically at the end of 2023. But the Centre for European Reform (CER) said the plans would lead to "unmanaged divergence" between Britain and the EU.

The think tank claimed this would "deepen the regulatory gulf between Great Britain and Northern Ireland". But the Government hit out at the claims, with an official spokesperson saying: "We reject these claims.

"We've been very clear that any reforms will not come at the expense of the UK's already high standards, or our international obligations.

"The Retained EU Law Bill will not compromise the Windsor Framework, while still allowing us to seize the regulatory reform opportunities offered by Brexit."

But a report from the CER said the Retained EU Law Bill could work to undermine the framework.

The report's author Anton Spisak said: "The risk is that Northern Irish businesses, which default to EU production rules, could be undercut by lower standards from GB producers.


"To avoid this, UK ministers would proactively have to 'preserve' all laws that could risk creating such difficulties for the UK's own internal market on the statute book.

"This defeats the purpose of the REUL bill."

He suggested that the bill could be amended to exclude all legislation that is effective in Northern Ireland, including any laws that fall within the scope of the Windsor Framework.

Mr Spisak claimed the EU is trying to avoid anything that would "rock the boat by raising questions that could spur fresh tensions".