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Labour MPs tell Chancellor Philip Hammond to publish his Brexit impact assessments

They say the public has a ‘right to know’ what government officials think will happen after withdrawal

Joe Watts
Political Editor
Wednesday 27 December 2017 09:38 GMT
Philip Hammond answering questions in front of the Treasury Select Committee
Philip Hammond answering questions in front of the Treasury Select Committee (PA)

Labour MPs have launched a new drive to push the Government into releasing official assessments of the impact Brexit will have on the economy.

The group of 25 MPs wrote to Chancellor Philip Hammond demanding he publish documents drawn up by his officials, after he mentioned the work had been done at a committee hearing.

It comes after Brexit Secretary David Davis faced intense criticism over the forced release of 60-odd sectoral analyses drawn up by his department.

In their letter, Labour supporters of the Open Britain group said the release of the Treasury documents is essential for Parliament to effectively hold the Government to account.

They said: “The public have a right to know what the impact of Brexit will be for them and for their families.

“Without access to the latest taxpayer-funded analysis and research, Parliament will be hamstrung in its ability to scrutinise the Government’s approach and to present the facts to our constituents.

“It is vital that light is shed on the modelling and analysis that the Treasury has carried out. The best way to achieve that would be for the analysis to be published in its entirety.”

The letter, passed to The Guardian, was sent after Mr Hammond told a Treasury Committee hearing earlier this month that officials had “modelled and analysed a wide range of potential alternative structures between the European Union and the United Kingdom”.

He said that the work “informs our negotiating position” in the Brexit talks.

Signatories to the letter include Chris Leslie, Maria Eagle, Stella Creasy and Alison McGovern.

Tory rebellion leads to defeat of Government over Brexit amendment

The latest move to prise information from the Government comes after Mr Davis came under pressure from MPs over the release of a series of his departments “sectoral analyses”.

After ministers initially suggested the documents were “impact assessments”, Mr Davis later admitted no such assessments had been done.

Meanwhile the analyses that were released, after a vote in the Commons demanded documents were published, were released in an edited form.

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