Whitehall has begun to build the machinery of Brexit, but the Government doesn’t yet know what to do with it. In this briefing paper we assess the progress the Government has made towards planning for Brexit. We identify the likely costs of the Government’s approach and what capability the Civil Service needs to support it.

The key points detailed in the briefing paper are:

  • The Government will need an extra 500 new staff, costing up to £65 million a year, just to plan its approach to Brexit
  • Turf wars between ministers have wasted valuable time and energy – The Prime Minister needs to move swiftly to prevent these.
  • We need to know more about how the Government plans to reach a negotiating position
  • Ministers need to be clear how they intend to engage beyond Whitehall – Brexit will affect every sector of the economy and region of the UK 
  • Whitehall must offer ministers its best shared analysis of the options they have – to provide a robust basis for the political choices they will need to make.

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