P&R chief at parliament Brexit strategy talks
POLICY & Resources president Gavin St Pier has been discussing with UK ministers the island’s readiness in case of a no-deal Brexit.
He attended the Department for Exiting the European Union’s 7th Quarterly Ministerial Meeting on Wednesday. It was chaired by the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department for Exiting the EU, Robin Walker MP.
‘We have taken the opportunity to discuss in some detail, the current progress of the Bailiwick’s preparedness, in particular in relation to trade in both goods and services as well as ensuring the Bailiwick is linking into and preparing for any negotiated outcome or for no deal.
‘I was particularly impressed by a series of presentations from officials across a number of UK government departments – including the Department for Business Energy and Industrial Strategy, HM Treasury, Department for International Trade, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, Department for Transport, and the Home Office – when the UK was able to clearly demonstrate the depth of understanding of the issues which impact the Bailiwick of Guernsey, as well as how the UK is honouring its commitment to ensure our interests are properly represented.’
The quarterly meetings were established following the UK’s referendum in June 2016 and enables discussion between the P&R president, the Chief Ministers of Jersey and the Isle of Man, and the Department for Exiting the European Union on the implications of the UK’s withdrawal from the EU.
The Crown Dependencies representatives held a separate meeting with Chris Heaton-Harris MP, the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department for Exiting the EU responsible for planning for a ‘no deal’ outcome.
This meeting followed a meeting with Mr Heaton-Harris that Deputy Lyndon Trott, P&R vice president, held while attending the Conservative Party Conference in Birmingham last week.
Deputy St Pier said: ‘I was grateful that Deputy Trott was able to initiate this meeting, which really illustrates the value of our attending the party conferences.
‘I was pleased with Chris Heaton-Harris’ categoric reassurance that the UK’s contingency planning for ‘‘no deal’’ recognised the need for full and timely exchange of information to better enable the Crown Dependencies to plan for this outcome too.’