Leaving the European Union

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 12:50 pm on 26th February 2019.

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Photo of Theresa May Theresa May The Prime Minister, Leader of the Conservative Party 12:50 pm, 26th February 2019

I say to my right hon. Friend that the commitment is that we will ensure, as I said to our right hon. Friend Mr Duncan Smith, that were we to get to the point of it being necessary to exercise what is known as the backstop, or the insurance policy for no hard border in Northern Ireland, at the end of the implementation period where it is necessary, we want to have the alternative arrangements ready to go at that point such that the backstop, as currently drafted, never needs to be used. That is the aim and the intent. We want to work on this quickly so that we have those clearly ready and understood before that date, but the commitment is to ensure that those alternative arrangements can indeed replace the backstop and ensure that it does not need to be used.