- The UK announced plans on Thursday to reevaluate leftover laws from the European Union.
- The government said it will review the EU ban on imperial units and legislate “in due course.”
- The EU-imposed metric system has “long been a flashpoint for anti-EU campaigners,” i news said.
The UK is considering reverting to the imperial system, the weight and measurement system that uses pounds and ounces, as part of it’s efforts to “capitalise on the freedoms from Brexit,” according to the British government.
In statement issued Thursday, the UK said thousands of European Union laws that the UK retained after Brexit “will be scrutinised by the Government to ensure they are helping the UK to thrive as a modern, dynamic, independent country and foster innovation across the British economy.”
The announcement said the government will be considering laws that have an impact on technology, transportation, and agriculture. It also said it would be “reviewing the EU ban on markings and sales in imperial units and legislating in due course, none of which were possible within the EU.”
Under the EU, supermarkets in the UK were required to list measurements for fruits and vegetables in the metric system, such as grams and kilograms, starting in 1994. However, the EU allowed Britain to use imperial measurements alongside metric, according to The New York Times.
Most of the world uses the metric system of weights and measurements. The US uses the imperial system.
UK newspaper i news said the EU-imposed metric system has “long been a flashpoint for anti-EU campaigners.”
Prime Minister Boris Johnson campaigned on a promise of reverting to the imperial system, saying in 2019 the change would be part of “an era of generosity and tolerance towards traditional measurements,” according to The Week.
With the announcement on Thursday, David Frost, the UK’s Brexit chief, said “overbearing regulations were often conceived and agreed in Brussels with little consideration of the UK national interest,” i news reported.
“We now have the opportunity to do things differently and ensure that Brexit freedoms are used to help businesses and citizens get on and succeed,” Frost said.
Critics have said changes to such rules seem insignificant in light of the difficulties businesses are having filling positions, driven “in part because of the exodus of European Union immigrants since the vote to leave the bloc,” The New York Times reported.
Other changes to back to pre-EU times have also been celebrated by the pro-Brexit crowd, including the UK reverting to blue-colored passports last year, replacing the burgundy color used by EU countries.
Home Secretary Priti Patel said at the time the blue passport will “once again be entwined with our national identity,” the BBC reported.