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Queen’s Speech 2017: key announcements

The Queen has announced the government legislation for the next 2 years as the UK prepares to leave the European Union (EU).

Legislation to deliver Brexit dominated the plans of the minority government, who want to build a “stronger economy” and promote “opportunity and aspiration”.

The following bills were included in the Queen’s Speech 2017:

Trade

  • legal framework to allow free trade deals with countries around the world and protect businesses from unfair trading practices.

Customs 

  • ensure the UK has a standalone post-Brexit customs regime
  • flexible future trade agreements with the EU
  • potential changes to the VAT and excise regimes on exit from the EU
  • control over the imports and exports of goods.

National insurance contributions 

  • commence changes to national insurance contributions (NICs) announced in Budget 2016 and Autumn Statement 2016
  • simplify the NICs system.

Data protection

  • ensure the data protection framework is suitable for the digital age
  • strengthen rights and empower individuals to have more control over their personal data
  • modernise and update the regime for data processing by law enforcement agencies.

Tenants’ fees

  • ban landlords and agents charging letting fees 
  • cap holding deposits at no more than 1 week’s rent and security deposits at no more than 1 month’s rent.

Dr Adam Marshall, director general of the British Chambers of Commerce, said:

“While Brexit isn’t the top immediate priority for many businesses, firms of every size and shape want to avoid turbulence and confusion during the Brexit transition. 

“The government’s proposed bills on trade, customs and immigration must minimise adjustment costs and maximise opportunities. 

“Achieving this will require continuous and constructive engagement with business communities across the UK.” 

Talk to us to discuss the Queen’s Speech 2017.