Stephen Kinnock: I congratulate my hon. Friend on securing this important debate. Given those regional imbalances and the question of how funding should be spent, is it not completely outrageous and unacceptable that we were promised a consultation on the shape of the shared prosperity fund, which should have started in late 2018, but have still not had one? My colleagues and I on the all-party parliamentary group for post-Brexit funding for nations, regions and local areas are sensing that there will not be a consultation before the comprehensive spending review. Does he share my view that that is completely unacceptable? Will he ask the Minister to confirm that he too thinks it is completely unacceptable?

Paul Blomfield: My hon. Friend is absolutely right. A feature of the wider debate on Brexit is that so many critical issues that will shape the outcome—structural funds, immigration and others—are just being kicked down the road. I hope that the Minister will respond directly to my hon. Friend’s point.

Stephen Kinnock: How does the hon. Lady propose that the lessons be learned and things be improved if there is no consultation exercise?

Sarah Newton: I will come to that in a moment.

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