The MPs have demanded the power to veto any trade deals that are negotiated by the government after the United Kingdom officially leaves the European Union.
In a move that is likely to be rejected by a government which has already pushed the so-called meaningful vote on the Brexit deal of Theresa May back by a month to mid-January, the influential International Trade Committee has called for the MPs to have a “meaningful parliamentary vote” on every deal that is struck post-Brexit.
The committee has claimed that the parliament, devolved government, business and the civil society should all play a part in the negotiation of the deals. It added that the government should “expand its means of consultation with business and civil society.”
The committee chair and a Scottish National Party MP, Angus Brendan MacNeil, stated: “We have seen what happens when the public and parliament are deliberately kept in the dark over trade negotiations.”
He added: “It [the government] should guarantee parliament a vote on the ratification of trade deals and give our Committee the tools we need to oversee and scrutinise negotiations as they progress.”
He continued: “If the proper processes and protections are not put in place from the outset, the Government may fail to realise the UK-wide post-Brexit benefits it has gone to such lengths to promote.”
In a report, the committee proposes some guidelines for the UK government to follow in the negotiation of trade deals post-Brexit.
While it accepts that trade deals are “the prerogative of government,” it is demanding for a “meaningful role” throughout their discussions for parliament.
It also calls that the trade policy should be “open and inclusive,” representing various stakeholder groups from across all of the nations in the United Kingdom.
It added that the UK government should be forced to “justify its decisions to withhold information” when negotiating deals, so as to “operate from a presumption of transparency.”