The British government is asking firms bidding for contracts whether they back Brexit

LONDON — The government is asking tech firms bidding for work with the government whether they back Brexit.

The Department for International Trade, run by trade minister Liam Fox, has placed an advert on its website which asks tech companies to bid for short-term contracts, specifying that they must “be committed to the best possible outcome for the United Kingdom following its departure from the European Union.”

It adds that 15% of the evaluation will be weighted towards assessing whether the company offers the right “cultural fit.”

Take a look:

The advert is for a four-week contract which invites a digital team to investigate “the feasibility of designing a system to manage intelligence on market access barriers.”

Senior Brexiteers, including Fox, appear to have been frustrated by a perceived pessimism towards the UK’s impending departure from the EU.

In December, consultancy firm Deloitte was forced to withdraw from bidding for government contracts after a two-page Brexit assessment prepared by the business for “internal audiences” was leaked to newspapers, provoking fury in Downing Street.

On Tuesday, Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson said he was fed up of people “moaning and droning” about the risks of Brexit.

Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron said in a statement to the Guardian: “The Conservative Brexit government demanding there must be a ‘cultural fit’ is straight out of the pages of Nineteen Eighty-Four.

“The private opinions of government employees have always been their own business. Now they are required to support Brexit, will they have to support the Tories too?”

“Professionals will always strive for the best outcomes in their work without being told how they should and shouldn’t think,” he added.

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