Barry Gardiner MP, Labour’s Shadow Secretary of State for International Trade, Europe, Energy & Climate Change, responding to the latest government u-turn on access to the Single Market, said:
“On Tuesday, we were told the Government had ruled out transitional arrangements until a new trade deal can be negotiated with the EU. Today, we are told this option has neither been ruled in or out. They are literally making up their policy on Brexit one day after another.
“More than 100 days after the EU Referendum they still have no plan, no answers and cannot agree amongst themselves on what the priorities are. This uncertainty is doing grave damage to the ability of British businesses to plan ahead and puts the jobs of hard-working people across the country in jeopardy.
“The idea of transitional arrangements is typical of this malaise: an indeterminate period where we would have to pay a premium price for access to the Single Market but may have no say over the legislation and regulatory standards that govern it, and still have no certainty over what will happen afterwards"
“Rather than delivering the certainty and stability required for long-term planning and investment, this would just prolong the uncertainty we already face and could lead to a long, slow death for British exporters. By definition, transitional arrangements are not a plan; they are a stopgap when you don’t know what to do.
“The country deserves better, but the Government just keeps doling out more of the same: no answers and no plan for the working people of this country and for British businesses.”