The government's bid to extract the UK from EU law in time for Brexit has passed its first Parliamentary test. MPs backed the EU Withdrawal Bill by 326 to 290 in a Monday late-night vote despite critics saying it represented a “power-grab” by ministers.1 comment
A Welsh Member of Parliament who quit Labour's shadow cabinet rather than back the bill to trigger Brexit has welcomed the party's call to stay in the single market temporarily. Cardiff Central MP Jo Stevens said Labour was shifting in the right direction on relations with the EU.
European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker has delivered a fresh rebuke to Theresa May over her Government’s handling of the Brexit process. He said official papers setting out the UK Government’s positions were not satisfactory and it was “crystal clear” that an “enormous amount” of issues needed to be settled before talks on a future trade deal could begin
The UK has been told by the EU’s chief Brexit negotiator that it needs to take withdrawal talks “seriously”. Michel Barnier used the opening of a third round of talks in Brussels on Monday to insist that London must end “ambiguity” regarding key positions like the Brexit divorce bill.
Labour would keep the UK in the EU single market and customs union for a transitional period after leaving the EU, the party has said. Shadow Brexit secretary Sir Keir Starmer clarified Labor's position on leaving the EU in The Observer.
Scotland First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has given a cautious welcome to a change of emphasis from Labour on Brexit, which has said it would advocate the UK remaining within the EU's single market and the customs union for a transitional period.
The UK has set out the ambitious new customs arrangement it wants to secure with the EU after Brexit. Ministers said the plans would mean the freest and most frictionless possible trade with the rest of Europe and could include a temporary customs union after Brexit to prevent border problems as the UK leaves the EU.
Any transitional deal in the period after Brexit must end by June 2022, the time of the next general election, Philip Hammond has said. But the chancellor said there must be business as usual, life as normal for Britons as the UK left the EU.