The government will launch “Brexit Freedoms” bills to amend outdated EU law

The government plans to introduce a bill on “Brexit freedoms” to make it easier to change outdated EU legislation, as part of an effort it claims will “cut £ 1bn in bureaucracy” for UK companies.

The bill will affect the handling of preserved EU law – Brussels-made rules, which were preserved in the UK Code of Legal Continuity after the Brexit transition period ended in 2020.

The government has previously made it clear that in the long run it intends to amend, replace or repeal all the retained law which it considers “not really for the UK”.

But Downing Street said that under current rules, changing or scrapping rules in the pipeline of outdated legislation would take “several years” due to a lengthy process of change.

It said primary legislation is needed for many changes, even if they are “minor and technical”.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson (Carl Recine / PA)

(PA line)

Downing Street said the new bill would “ensure that changes can be made more easily” so Britain can “capitalize on Brexit freedom faster”.

It did not specify exactly what provisions the bill would include to speed up reforms, or how it calculated that companies would save £ 1 billion by cutting bureaucracy.

Officials are reviewing all the laws in force “to determine if they are in the UK’s favor,” Downing Street said.

The Prime Minister said earlier that his administration wanted to “cut back on EU bureaucracy” and restore “common sense in our rulebooks” by 2022.

Suella Braverman, the Attorney General, said the new bill meant Britain could move away from outdated laws that were the result of “unsatisfactory compromises within the EU”.

Attorney General Suella Braverman (Aaron Chown / PA)

(PA line)

“These rules often had limited meaningful parliamentary control and no democratic legitimacy at all in Britain,” she said.

“It is vital that we take the necessary steps in this House to completely eliminate unnecessary rules and, where there is a need for regulation, ensure that it meets the objectives of the United Kingdom.”

The bill is also expected to end the special status of EU law in the UK legal framework.

“Despite our exit from the bloc, EU laws made before January 1, 2020, continue to take precedence over our domestic framework,” Downing Street said.

“This is simply not compatible with our status as a sovereign, independent country, and the government will bring it to an end as soon as possible.”



The plans we have presented today will further unlock the benefits of Brexit and ensure that companies can spend more of their money on investing, innovating and creating jobs.

Boris Johnson, Prime Minister

Boris Johnson said: “Getting Brexit two years ago today was a truly historic moment and the start of an exciting new chapter for our country.

“We have made great strides since then to exploit our newfound freedoms and restore Britain’s status as a sovereign, independent country that can determine its own future.

“The plans we have drawn up today will further unlock the benefits of Brexit and ensure that companies can spend more of their money on investing, innovating and creating jobs.

“Our new Brexit Freedoms Bill will end the special status of EU law in our legal framework and ensure that we can more easily amend or remove obsolete EU laws in the future.”

Cabinet Secretary Steve Barclay said leaving the EU had “given us the opportunity to establish our own rules for how we live and manage our lives in the UK”.

“The Brexit Freedoms Bill will continue to facilitate the removal of cumbersome EU laws, which were originally retained to facilitate our transition but which do not meet the future needs of the UK,” he added.

Meanwhile, the government has released a new policy document outlining how it intends to use Brexit to “transform Britain into the best regulated economy in the world”.

Labor shadow lawyer Emily Thornberry (Jacob King / PA)

(PA archive)

Emily Thornberry, Labor’s shadow lawyer, said: “Despite all this talk from the government about the potential legislative freedom we have outside the EU, they still refuse to make a concrete change that the Labor Party has demanded in this area for several months. , which is the removal of VAT on people’s energy bills.

“The British public overwhelmingly supports Labor’s proposed change and it’s time for the government to start listening.”

Scottish Culture Minister Angus Robertson criticized the idea, which he said was conceived with “little discussion, consultation with, or actually respect for, the Scottish Parliament and Government”.

He added: “This makes a mockery of the British Government’s recent commitment to reset relations with decentralized governments.

“Within days of the British government promising more respectful ways of working, we were informed of what is clearly a hasty exercise over the weekend with nothing but a vague verbal briefing.

“If these proposals involve amending the law in decentralized policy areas, then pushing further without the consent of the Scottish Parliament would once again demonstrate the British Government’s intention to undermine decentralization.”

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