The Brexit opportunities minister identified a regulation requiring fizz to be sold in glass bottles as one of the Brussels rules which could be expunged from UK law following EU withdrawal.
His comment came as Labour denounced as a “gimmick” a new Brexit dashboard launched by Mr Rees-Mogg, which will be updated every three months to show how many of the 2,400 pieces of EU legislation still in place in the UK have been removed.
The Cabinet Office minister said the dashboard would ensure the public can “join us on this journey to amend, repeal or replace” retained EU law in a bid to cut at least £1 billion of business costs from “EU red tape”.
But Labour’s Stephen Doughty retorted: “This simply appears to be a vanity project.
“It’s quite extraordinary that on the day that inflation tops 9 per cent, the cost of energy is soaring, families facing massive pressures wondering how they will put food on the table, prices rising at the fastest rate of increase for 40 years, the government’s offer today to the British people is a digital filing cabinet of existing legislation, which the gentleman describes, in his own words, as marginal.”
Mr Rees-Mogg later acknowledged that many of the 2,400 rules were of limited significance in themselves.
But he told reporters: “It’s going to be lots and lots of little things. But these little things add up into something that is fundamental and revolutionary.
“Each and every one of them is something which is easy for people to pooh-pooh and say ‘What’s the point of this effort? The mountain heaved and brought forth a miserable mouse’. But this is bringing forth elephants cumulatively.”
Mr Rees-Mogg recently appealed to readers of a tabloid newspaper for suggestions of which EU regulations to slash.
As well as fizz in plastic bottles, he today suggested that changes could be made to end limits on the power of vacuum cleaners, scrap mandatory training update courses for HGV drivers or to abolish rules which require B&B hotels to register as package tour operators if they provide vouchers to dine in local restaurants.
He rejected suggestions that a bonfire of rules would turn the UK into a “Wild West” unregulated zone, and insisted that his drive was “not about lowering standards”.
Despite a string of reports – including from the government’s own Office for Budget Responsibility – suggesting that Brexit has cut UK GDP, Mr Rees-Mogg refused to give any estimate of how much benefit or damage was doing to the economy, saying it was impossible to know how Britain would have fared if it had stayed.
He told MPs: “With inflation running high we need to search everywhere and under every stone and sofa cushion for supply-side reforms that make products and services cheaper, make things easier for business and ultimately grow the economy and cut the cost of living.”
Source Link Sparkling wine in plastic bottles could be a benefit of Brexit, says Jacob Rees-Mogg