As we now have a new Minister charged with the task of securing some of the many wins the UK can enjoy from its freedoms out of the EU I will be writing a few pieces setting out some of those opportunities again to assist the government’s task.
Today I wish to look at a few of the particular laws and ECJ decisions of the EEC/EU which were opposed by the UK at the time and were damaging to UK interests.
There was the Factortame case, the first one where an Act of Parliament was struck down by the ECJ. The ECJ prevailed and prevented the UK’s Merchant Shipping Act from boosting the UK fleet. We should reinstate measures to expand our merchant marine and fishing fleets as other independent countries do.
There was the EU legislation to damage the competitive position of the UK auction houses and to impose the droit de suite payments, helping US rivals. This could be amended.
There was the EU railway legislation requiring the separation of track and trains, which needs changing to allow a reconfigured railway with single accountability for track and train where appropriate.
As we were leaving the EU imposed a Ports Directive which the UK government and the industry disagreed with. It should be repealed.
The current ” transition” for our fishery still leaves too much of the catch for EU boats at the expense of our own industry. EU policy led to a big loss of UK based fishing activity, and a move of the UK from being a net exporter to being a net importer of fish.
There was the set of decisions of the ECJ that reduced the UK tax take from Corporation tax, as with the case that decided continental losses could be offset against UK profits which the Treasury had contested. The Treasury should review the cases and legislate where it wishes to impose the original intention.