EU: “Confidentiality Necessary to Protect Our Interests”

Sir Keir Starmer boarded the outrage bus to the Today programme studios this morning to accuse David Davis of contempt for not releasing unredacted versions of the government’s Brexit impact assessments. Do Labour really think this would help Britain’s negotiating position? They should take a look at how the EU handles such sensitive information on its own side. This is from the European Commission’s “Transparency in EU trade negotiations” document – it makes clear the EU would never release information that could undermine its position during a negotiation.

“A certain level of confidentiality is necessary to protect EU interests and to keep chances for a satisfactory outcome high. When entering into a game, no-one starts by revealing his entire strategy to his counterpart from the outset: this is also the case for the EU.”

Sir Keir says he only wants DExEU to hand the assessments over to the Brexit select committee for them to decide what should be published, and therefore this would not undermine our negotiating position. Well given Hilary Benn’s committee (presumably Seema Malhotra) has leaked DD’s letter to the Mirror before they even discussed it or published it on their website, that doesn’t bode well for the security of information handed to the committee. The Remainers on the committee clearly can’t be trusted not to leak the unredacted documents. Handing them sensitive information would be mad…




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