UK Not Looking For "Race To The Bottom" After Brexit, Davis Says


It highlights: the fact that the European Union largely sets minimum standards not maximum ones; that many senior figures have argued strongly in favour of deregulation; and that the United Kingdom may not have the resources to keep up with changes to European Union regulations after Brexit so will converge "by accident rather than design".

'I know that for one reason or another there are some people who have sought to question that these really are our intentions, ' he will say.

He told the doubters: "They fear that Brexit could lead to an Anglo-Saxon race to the bottom".

Davis dismissed fears that Britain would seek to compete with lax regulations in China and other major manufacturing countries.

"This challenge will only be met by an "increase [in standards]".

Since Britain voted to leave the European Union in 2016, supporters of Brexit have argued that removing the costs imposed by European Union rules would be one of the main benefits.

"The agreement we strike will not be about how to build convergence but what to do when one of us wants to make changes to rules", he said.

In a BBC Radio 4 documentary, he questioned the ability of some pro-Brexit colleagues to "accept evidence" of the economic risks of leaving the European Union, and said the government ought to publish such analysis in full after it is produced.

Davis proposed a system of mutual recognition between the European Union and Britain.

The Brexit Secretary was asked about reports of a "secret plan" to withhold the payment agreed in December and said the issue was "bound up into one" with talks on the UK's future relationship. That's exactly the sort of arrangement we want to see maintained even after we leave the European Union'.

The speech is the thid made by senior Cabinet figures to set out the government's road map for Brexit.

'Such mutual recognition will naturally require close, even-handed co-operation between these authorities and a common set of principles to guide them, ' he said.

The Brexit secretary will claim that Theresa May's government wants to oversee a race to the top in global standards, listing workers' rights, City regulation, animal welfare and the environment as areas for potential improvement.

Davis's speech was welcomed by business groups.

"This will be a crucial part of ensuring our future economic partnership is as open and trade remains as frictionless as possible". No sector is looking for divergence.

Britain has significantly lowered its expectations for Brexit, giving few assurances other than that it is unlikely it will end in "Mad Max-style dystopia".

However, Deane said that regaining sovereign control over regulation was a key triumph of Brexit and not something to fear.

Davis' speech also comes as a new survey from Opinium and the IPPR think tank stressed there is little public appetite for post-Brexit environmental deregulation.