The former leader of the Conservative Party recently co-authored a report for the Centre for Brexit Policy, which argued that the establishment is holding the country back from unlocking its true potential. Instead of viewing the UK as a declining international force, the report argues Brexit gives Britain the chance to become a dominant global power now it is free from the EU’s shackles.
In an exclusive interview with Express.co.uk, Mr Duncan Smith said there are plenty of opportunities to slash unneeded red tape, as well as lots of scope to re-write the rules.
He said: “We’re locking ourselves to Europe, and we have had to accept rules and regulations which are always going to be massive compromises.
“We need to set policy around what works for us, an island nation on the northern end of Europe with a historic global trading mission.
“What we have to do is look at the areas which have regulation involved which do not work for us.
“Now we’ve left (the EU), we need to take advantage of what we can do.”
The Conservative MP for Chingford and Woodford Green noted the study builds on another report he co-wrote with the now Science Minister George Freeman last year.
As part of Taskforce on Innovation, Growth and Regulatory Reform (TIGR), Mr Freeman met the UK’s top scientists who “all said they all voted remain, but said that now we have left, we need to take advantage of what we can do”.
Mr Duncan Smith explained to Express.co.uk: “What they were keen to do was for the Government to look at the medical tech end. They said, and I agree with them, that there is a very big, fast-growing market. This includes things like trail, test, development, laboratory work…all this stuff.
“The UK can make itself a global centre for medical tech, and they said that because of two things.
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He told Express.co.uk: “The UK is a global leader in standards. All industrial standards were set in the UK first. If we get ahead of the game on this medical tech, it’s almost certain that… these would then be adopted as the standard for the rest of the world and it would give us a headstart.
“There are only three countries that dominate the standards around the world for various types of industries. One is the US, the second is China, and the third one is us. The potential is absolutely enormous…and this is where the real benefit comes almost immediately in financial terms for the UK.”
And Mr Duncan has stressed that Whitehall needs to follow the lead of the science establishment, which he claims is ready to embrace Brexit.
He said: “They have got to recognise that we did Brexit, which means enthusiastically embracing it. The thing I was struck by is that the science establishment has got to this point and wants to do things we couldn’t do before. The civil service has got to do this now as well. They have got to stop moaning – stop thinking of it (Brexit) as damage limitation and be bold.”