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Preparations for Leaving the European Union

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 6:32 pm on 21st October 2019.

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Photo of Michael Gove Michael Gove Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster 6:32 pm, 21st October 2019

My right hon. Friend makes a very fair point. If we leave without the withdrawal agreement being ratified, we will leave without that deal. “No deal” is sometimes used to cover that specific outcome, and it is with respect to that widely accepted description that I use the term. He is right to say there are other agreements, and there will continue to be agreements, that we have concluded, both with individual EU member states and with the EU overall, which will govern our relationship. However, I am strongly of the view that a withdrawal agreement which has been ratified in this place will be the best possible way in which we can ensure both that we recognise the Brexit referendum vote and that we continue to have free trade and friendly co-operation.