DEFRA boosts staffing by 75% to deal with Brexit

Extra 1,387 staff hired by DEFRA in past year to deal with work on the UK’s withdrawal from the EU

DEFRA sign. Photograph: DEFRA
DEFRA has hired 1,387 extra staff to deal with 64 projects to do with exiting the EU

DEFRA increased total staff numbers to 3,226 in 2017-18 compared with 1,839 in 2016-17 – an increase of 75% or more than 1,300 – to deal with Brexit, according to its annual report and accounts.

The report, published yesterday, states that the scale of preparing for Brexit “dominates large parts of DEFRA’s attention”. More than 80% of the department’s work is framed by EU legislation, and a quarter of EU law applies to DEFRA’s sectors, it notes.

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