Priti Patel has said Conservative MPs should use the passage of the EU Withdrawal Bill through parliament to “discard” unwanted regulations.
The international development secretary said Brexit was a “once in a lifetime opportunity to cast off that straight jacket” of regulations that “serve no purpose”.
The government’s withdrawal Bill transposes EU laws and regulations into British law as part of the Brexit process.
Speaking at a fringe event at the Conservative Party conference in Manchester on Monday evening, Patel encouraged her Tory colleagues to try and strip out specific regulations they do not like.
“One of the key things is the processes in the parliament and using the process in parliament, using the repeal bill through the various committees,” she said.
Patel, who campaigned for Brexit and is a fierce advocate of free markets, said MPs should be saying “this is out-of-date, we don’t need this, it’s not applicable to modern Britain”.
Parliament should be “discarding those regulations in particular that serve no purpose and are passed their shelf life”, she said.
Asked whether the government should see Brexit as a chance to “incinerate” EU regulations rather than keep them, Patel said that was “absolutely right”.
Patel said: “There is a hell of a lot over the last 45-years that we have applied to our statue books, to business, to all walks life ranging from electrical products, to things that we consume, we have to go through the details.
“Use this once in a lifetime opportunity to cast off that straight-jacket that has been imposed.”
However Patel said Brexit should also be used to “strengthen” some regulations including to “protect workers rights in certain quarters”.