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Letter: Brexit deal will make UK poorer

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SIR – I note in last week’s A&T that Forest MPs supported the government’s Brexit deal with the EU, because red tape and fish were a price worth paying.

If this was half true, I would agree. It is untrue, however.

The Brexit withdrawal agreement is a sad, rushed deal covering manufacturing and agriculture, that excludes services, especially financial services in which Britain excels. It will make our country poorer, less secure and reduce our influence in the world.

Under the deal, Britain may diverge from EU environmental, social and labour regulatory standards (which are widely supported in the UK) and ban EU fishing fleets from our coastal waters in five years’ time.

In return, the EU has the right to impose punitive retaliatory trade tariffs if we diverge from its standards, or in the event of “serious disagreements on fishing quotas”.

Instead of talking-up this latest failure of Boris Johnson and his second-division administration, Forest MPs should be paying attention to the limited opportunity they were given to scrutinise the deal, details of which were published just 24 hours before they were debated by parliament.

In particular, they should be concerned about Section 31 of the act that enables government ministers to reshape any aspect of national life the EU previously touched upon without parliamentary scrutiny.

In hastily passing the Brexit withdrawal agreement, MPs surrendered the sovereignty of Parliament to a dishonest, incompetent government. Forest MPs should be ashamed.

Bill Basham,


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