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Part of European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill – in the House of Commons at 6:00 pm on 8th January 2020.

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Photo of Joanna Cherry Joanna Cherry Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Justice and Home Affairs), Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Justice), Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Home Affairs) 6:00 pm, 8th January 2020

I am very grateful to the hon. Gentleman for reminding me of the position in Wales. That of course reflects the fact that, again, this is a concern not just of nationalist parties, but of the parties that support the devolved settlements but perhaps do not wish to go as far as independence.

The SDLP’s new clause 46 requires regional equality, environmental and economic impact assessments of any proposed future relationship or free trade agreement. Again, that is eminently sensible. It is similar to Plaid Cymru’s new clause 16, which is looking for a UK-wide economic impact assessment. Again, those are matters that I would have thought any MP who cares about the outcome of these negotiations and the future of their constituents’ livelihoods would be well advised to support.

I will conclude by saying that we need to take account in these proceedings of the different positions of the devolved nations. What I say and will continue to say to the Government is that if they continue to act as if there is no difference between the wishes of the electorate in England and the wishes of the electorate in Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales, they will do so at their peril, and the Union that they say they care about so much will be further undermined by that behaviour.