Lesley Griffiths MS, Minister for Rural Affairs and North Wales, and Trefnydd
In accordance with the inter-institutional relations agreement, I wish to notify you a further meeting of the Inter-Ministerial Group for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs was held on 7 November.
The meeting was chaired by Lorna Slater MSP, Minister for Green Skills, Circular Economy, and Biodiversity from Scottish Government. The meeting was also attended by Mairi Gougeon MSP, Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs and the Islands, Scottish Government; Therese Coffey MP, Secretary of State for Environment Food and Rural Affairs, UK Government; Mark Spencer MP, Minister of State for Food, UK Government; John Lamont MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at Office of the Secretary of State for Scotland, UK Government; James Davies MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Office of the Secretary of State for Wales, UK Government; and Katrina Godfrey, Permanent Secretary, DAERA in the absence of NI ministers.
This was the first IMG since the Royal Welsh Show in July, with September and October being cancelled due to changes in UK Government.
At the meeting we discussed the Retained EU Law (Reform and Revocation) Bill, including the current status of the Bill, and in particular Defra’s plans for managing the over 600 pieces of legislation in the portfolio.
We then discussed borders and I requested an update on the Target Operating Model and outlined my continuing concerns over ensuring BCPs are ready.
Following this we discussed issues with VAT in relation to Deposit Return Schemes , which is a concern to all four administrations but particularly to Scottish Government as their scheme launches in 2023.
Finally we agreed to publish the Joint Fisheries Statement.
The next meeting will be held on Monday 5 December.
A communique regarding this meeting will be published on the UK Government website at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/communique-from-the-inter-ministerial-group-for-environment-food-and-rural-affairs.