Currently, there are overarching rules from the EU that apply common policy approaches across the UK. For example, in relation to trade and common resources such as air, rivers and seas. Once the UK leaves the EU, there will be some areas where there is still a need for common frameworks and approaches across the UK.

At the Joint Ministerial Committee for European Negotiations in October 2017, Scottish, Welsh and UK Government Ministers agreed a set of principles to develop new frameworks. The UK Government has since been engaging with the devolved administrations on which areas will or will not need common approaches and what these might look like.

Progress to date

On 4 April 2019 the UK Government published a revised frameworks analysis, which set out a detailed assessment of progress. This was the culmination of multilateral policy development in priority framework areas, through which the UK Government and devolved administration officials produced outline frameworks in the majority of priority areas. Discussions on cross-cutting issues, including the internal market and governance, continue in parallel and we have jointly developed an engagement strategy that will raise awareness, secure buy-in and increase transparency in the overall programme. The cooperative approach on frameworks so far demonstrates the progress that can be achieved through proceeding collaboratively.

Officials from the Northern Ireland Civil Service have engaged in the common frameworks process where the policy area intersects with the devolved competence of the Northern Ireland Assembly. In the absence of the NI Executive, officials’ input has been limited to analytical and factual responses only.

 

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