Retained EU Law Debate

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Department: Cabinet Office

Retained EU Law

Baroness Ludford Excerpts
Thursday 18th November 2021

(2 months ago)

Lords Chamber
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Asked by
Baroness Ludford Portrait Baroness Ludford
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To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to the Statement by the Minister of State at the Cabinet Office (Lord Frost) on 16 September (HL Deb, col 1533), whether the review of the substantive content of retained European Union law has commenced; and what engagement they are planning to undertake with stakeholders, including those in Northern Ireland.

Lord Frost Portrait The Minister of State, Cabinet Office (Lord Frost) (Con)
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My Lords, I have now launched two reviews: one into the substance of retained EU law and one into its status in law. As regards the substantive review, departments have been asked to review and map the content of retained EU law that falls within their responsibility in order to be clear where the heaviest concentrations are and what the effect is. Departments are responsible for consulting stakeholders as appropriate in order to complete this task, including, of course, those in Northern Ireland.

Baroness Ludford Portrait Baroness Ludford (LD)
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My Lords, the freezing of EU law in domestic law at the end of last year delivered legal certainty and stability, including for the position of Northern Ireland in relation to the EU single market. Will the Government take great care in unravelling that? How do they intend to implement any change to retained EU law? Will they commit to doing so through primary legislation only?

Lord Frost Portrait Lord Frost (Con)
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My Lords, as regards Northern Ireland, we will of course proceed with an eye on stability and with predictability, as we have made clear on many occasions. On retained EU law more broadly, I noted in my Statement on 16 September that many such laws had not been discussed or agreed to in this Parliament in any way during the course of our EU membership and any amendments to those laws in future would need to reflect that reality.