MPs urge government to publish detailed Brexit plan by mid-February at the latest

MPs are urging the UK government to publish details of a detailed Brexit plan by mid-February at the very latest.

Parliament’s Exiting the EU committee published a report on Saturday calling for a plan on Brexit to be published in the form of a White Paper, because of “its huge significance”, by the middle of February 2017 at “the very latest”.

The report makes recommendations about how the government should approach its task on leaving the European Union.

The report noted evidence of the “strain that preparation for exiting the EU” is having on the government. Not only is this a strain on the Department for Exiting the EU but on other Departments with responsibilities in “delivering Brexit”. The report said “it is essential that all those involved are clear about the objectives.”

When the British government provides details of its Brexit plan, it should also declare its position in relation to membership of the Single Market and Customs Union, the report said.

Economic assessments of the different options for market access and trade, looking both at risks and opportunities, should also be published alongside the Brexit plan “in so far as it does not compromise the Government’s negotiating hand.”

Opposition Labour lawmaker Hilary Benn, chair of the committee, was quoted by Reuters as saying, “The government needs to publish its Brexit plan by mid-February at the latest, including its position on membership of the single market and the customs union, so that it can be scrutinised by parliament and the public.”

“We’re not asking the government to give away its red lines or negotiating fall-back positions but we do want clarity on its broad aims, given the significance and complexity of the negotiating task,” said Benn.

The Exiting the European Union Committee is appointed by the House of Commons to examine the expenditure, administration, and policy of the Department for Exiting the European Union and related matters falling within the responsibilities of associated public bodies.