Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs: Brexit

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs written question – answered on 10th July 2019.

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Photo of Tom Brake Tom Brake Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (International Trade), Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Exiting the European Union)

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what preparations his Department is making for the UK leaving the EU without an agreement; and how much funding has been allocated to those preparations.

Photo of David Rutley David Rutley Assistant Whip (HM Treasury), Government Whip

The Government remains focused on ensuring our smooth and orderly withdrawal from the EU, with a deal, as soon as possible.

Leaving without a withdrawal agreement remains the legal default at the end of the extension period, and as a responsible Government we have been preparing to minimise any disruption in the event of no deal for over two years.

In light of the agreed extension to the EU departure date, departments are making pragmatic decisions about the timing and pace at which some of this work is progressing. We continue to prepare for all exit scenarios.

Defra has put in place a range of mitigations to minimise any disruption arising from leaving the EU without a deal. This has included creating six new IT systems, ensuring necessary legislation was passed, and setting up a Business Readiness Directorate to support increased levels of stakeholder engagement.

We have also taken extensive steps to provide businesses and citizens with advice and guidance aimed at helping to mitigate the potential impacts of no deal. Where necessary, we will continue to update our advice on gov.uk on how people should prepare.

HM Treasury has allocated over £4.2 billion of additional funding to departments and the Devolved Administrations for EU exit preparations so far. This funding is to cover all exit scenarios, and is in addition to departmental efforts to reprioritise from business as usual toward preparations for the UK’s departure from the EU.

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