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Part of European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill – in the House of Commons at 6:45 pm on 8th January 2020.

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Photo of James Duddridge James Duddridge The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union 6:45 pm, 8th January 2020

Forgive me if I am not definitive and if I have not ticked off every single point, but the underlying point is that there will be no regression. We have committed to environmental rights, and I will go into more detail on how we will move ahead of what the EU is currently doing and of what it proposes to do. The answer, in spirit, is yes, but I do not want to give a resounding yes, just in case there is one comma in one part of the hon. Lady’s amendment that deviates from what we are doing.

On the broader suggestions about participation in EU funding programmes, the political declaration envisages close co-operation across a range of areas, including science—I am coming on to that—and education. The declaration already provides a possibility for programmes, which will be done during the negotiation period.

The political declaration sets out that the parties will also explore co-operation between the United Kingdom and all the appropriate EU agencies. The nature of that co-operation will be subject to negotiation.