Starmer: Govt is using “non-committal” Brexit policy papers to hide EU negotiation failures

Labour has accused the government of publishing “bland, non-committal” Brexit policy papers to hide its failure to progress past negotiations over citizens rights, the Northern Irish border and a divorce settlement with the EU.

In a paper published on Monday, the government laid out its position in relation to the trade of goods already on the market, and the services associated with them, after Britain withdraws from the EU.

A second paper released the same day detailed plans for confidentiality agreements on information exchanged between the EU and the UK.

A third paper published today (August 22) envisions close legal cooperation between the UK and the EU, but reiterated the government’s intention to leave the jurisdiction of the European of Court of Justice.

Shadow secretary of state for exiting the European Union, Keir Starmer said: “These papers come months after the EU published their plans and offer precious little new information or concrete proposals.

“It is increasingly clear that the government are publishing bland, non-committal papers as a smokescreen to mask their failure to make any meaningful progress on phase one’s core negotiating issues – including citizens’ rights.

“Instead of preparing the ground for failure, the government should focus on reaching an early agreement to the first stage of talks and make an early commitment to establish strong transitional arrangements.”