European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 1:51 pm on 29th January 2019.

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Photo of Theresa May Theresa May The Prime Minister, Leader of the Conservative Party 1:51 pm, 29th January 2019

We are looking at ways in which we can give that assurance in relation to workers’ rights. As I said, we are looking at when legislation would be appropriate and where it would be necessary. I am happy to meet the hon. Lady to go through that issue.

I want to complete what I was saying to my right hon. Friend Nicky Morgan. We will indeed engage seriously and positively with the proposals that she has put forward, which were also referenced by my hon. Friend the Member for North East Somerset. The crucial concept that we see within this amendment is the concept of alternative arrangements. As I have already said in this speech, that has already been accepted by the EU as a way out of the backstop. I commend my hon. and right hon. Friends for their willingness to find a solution and I look forward to working with them over the coming days. A number of other colleagues have also suggested ways to achieve that aim, such as securing a time limit to the backstop, or a unilateral exit clause, which we will of course study closely as well. While there are obviously details that need to be worked through, the fact that leading figures from different sides of the argument are coming together to develop proposals shows how much progress has been made over the past few weeks.