The Centre for Brexit Policy was conceived just over a year ago. A number of campaigners, academics, politicians and businessmen recognised that – assuming Brexit is delivered – there would no longer be a need for a campaign group.
Memories of the months immediately after the 2016 EU referendum acted as a warning for the consequences of not having a pro-Brexit presence. Too many organisations shut up shop after the EU referendum and, as a result, the media were totally dominated by anti-Brexit voices.
I am delighted to be part of the Centre for Brexit Policy (CBP) which is launching this week. The CBP is a brand new think-tank backed by cross-party politicians and veterans of the national Brexit debate.
The Covid-19 crisis in the UK is causing much distress to people right across the country. It is inevitable that when life does return to some form of normality, as a nation we will be faced with serious economic challenges.
The UK is leaving the EU and therefore it is absolutely essential that policies adopted by the government in post-Brexit Britain boost national prosperity and well-being in years to come, as well as ensure that the UK ‘takes back control’ now that it has left the EU.
The importance of the cross-party nature of the think tank should not be underestimated, particularly at this difficult time. The directors – Rt Hon. Owen Paterson, Rt Hon. Sammy Wilson MP, John Longworth, Matthew Patten, Edgar Miller and myself – vary widely on our political positions. However, we are united in wanting our country to achieve great things after Brexit. The three core objectives of the CBP are to:
- Identify the benefits and opportunities of Brexit across the full spectrum of economic, trade, social, foreign, defence and security policy areas and propose new policies for the government’s agenda;
- Continue to make the intellectual, evidence-based case for a ‘real’ Brexit and provide the government with clear and constructive advice on how to deal with ongoing negotiation and implementation issues. A real Brexit means regaining full control over our laws, borders, seas, trade, and courts, regardless of the route taken to achieve these; and
- Check any attempts to dilute a real Brexit, as well as serving as a catalyst and rallying point for positive news stories that, over time, will be able to persuade and demonstrate the many substantial advantages of Brexit.
The CBP has the support of accomplished individuals from multiple disciplines, including Professor Robert Tombs, Martin Howe QC and Professor Angus Dalgleish. They will provide additional expertise and experience in the development of an agenda for policy change that will ensure the British people benefit from Brexit.
Additional support will be provided by a CBP business forum that will bring senior business leaders together to provide input to shape CBP’s agenda and policy proposals, as well as to deliver a pro-Brexit business voice.
Rebuilding our nation’s economy after this challenging time is going to focus the minds of people across the country. Ensuring that Britain takes full advantage of all of the benefits of leaving the EU is absolutely critical to this recovery. The CBP will be working hard over the months ahead to produce thoughtful, detailed, effective policies to present to the government as part of the effort to rebuild our nation.