EU Exit Preparations: Ferry Contracts

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 2:18 pm on 5th March 2019.

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Photo of Charlie Elphicke Charlie Elphicke Conservative, Dover 2:18 pm, 5th March 2019

I thank my hon. Friend for making exactly the point that I am coming to. I set out how we needed to invest to be ready on day one, deal or no deal; as I argued at the time, to get the best negotiation, we needed to be able to get up and walk away from the table. I also set out detailed legal reasons why we did not owe any of the divorce bill—another point that was important to our negotiation.

The Government as a whole—the Cabinet—decided not to spend money at that time. The Cabinet decided not to invest at that time. The Cabinet decided not to take forward contingency planning at a substantial level until after the Chequers discussions. To visit that on the Secretary of State would not be fair, right or proper.