Fylde MP Mark Menzies called on the Government to ensure small food producers in Lancashire have equal access to internal UK markets once the UK fully leaves the European Union.
He spoke in a Parliamentary debate following the publication of the Government’s White Paper on the UK internal market.
Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Alok Sharma said: “For centuries, the United Kingdom’s internal market has been the bedrock of our shared prosperity, with people, products, ideas and investment moving seamlessly between our nations, safeguarding livelihoods and businesses and demonstrating that, as a union, our country is greater than the sum of its parts.”
The White Paper sets out the Government’s plans to preserve the UK internal market after the transition period.
Since 1973, EU law has been the tool used to ensure unhindered and open trade across the country; on 1 January 2021, hundreds of powers previously held by the EU will be given back to devolved administrations in the United Kingdom and the White Paper sets out how that will happen.
In the debate, Mr Menzies said: “I welcome the Secretary of State’s statement on the internal market, but may I press him to ensure that the interests of small food producers, particularly those in Lancashire, are given equal weighting to all these additional powers that have been given to the Scottish Parliament, because we do not want any part of the United Kingdom to be left behind?”
Mr Sharma told him there would be a level playing field across the UK for all businesses. He said: “My hon. Friend is right to say that we do not want any part of the UK, or indeed any business across the UK, to be left behind, which is precisely why we have set out our proposals on mutual recognition and non-discrimination.”