The government has published an official White Paper laying out its Brexit plans.
The document sets out in print the 12 principles Theresa May previously announced in a speech last month.
The principles include withdrawing from the EU single market and customs union, but says the government will “keep our positions closely held and will need at times to be careful about the commentary we make public”, with MPs offered a vote on the final deal.
Labour has called for this final vote to allow MPs to send the government back to the negotiating table, while the Liberal Democrats have pushed for a referendum to be held on the final deal to let the British public
The publication of the White Paper comes after cross-party pressure that the government must publish its plans for Brexit to allow parliamentary scrutiny. However, Labour says the policy document “says nothing” and adds little clarity on the details that should allow MPs to hold the government to account.
Theresa May’s 12 point plan for Brexit
- Providing certainty and clarity – We will provide certainty wherever we can as we approach the negotiations.
- Taking control of our own laws – We will take control of our own statute book and bring an end to the jurisdiction of the Court of Justice of the European Union in the UK.
- Strengthening the Union – We will secure a deal that works for the entire UK – for Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and all parts of England. We remain fully committed to the Belfast Agreement and its successors.
- Protecting our strong and historic ties with Ireland and maintaining the Common Travel Area – We will work to deliver a practical solution that allows for the maintenance of the Common Travel Area, whilst protecting the integrity of our immigration system and which protects our strong ties with Ireland.
- Controlling immigration – We will have control over the number of EU nationals coming to the UK.
- Securing rights for EU nationals in the UK, and UK nationals in the EU – We want to secure the status of EU citizens who are already living in the UK, and that of UK nationals in other Member States, as early as we can.
- Protecting workers’ rights – We will protect and enhance existing workers’ rights.
- Ensuring free trade with European markets – We will forge a new strategic partnership with the EU, including a wide reaching, bold and ambitious free trade agreement, and will seek a mutually beneficial new customs agreement with the EU.
- Securing new trade agreements with other countries – We will forge ambitious free trade relationships across the world.
- Ensuring the UK remains the best place for science and innovation – We will remain at the vanguard of science and innovation and will seek continued close collaboration with our European partners.
- Cooperating in the fight against crime and terrorism – We will continue to work with the EU to preserve European security, to fight terrorism, and to uphold justice across Europe.
- Delivering a smooth, orderly exit from the EU – We will seek a phased process of implementation, in which both the UK and the EU institutions and the remaining EU Member States prepare for the new arrangements that will exist between us.