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Main power in connection with other separation issues

Part of European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill – in the House of Commons at 2:15 pm on 8th January 2020.

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Photo of Robin Walker Robin Walker The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Scotland 2:15 pm, 8th January 2020

I will not, I am afraid.

The Government cannot accept amendment 49, as it would mean that we could be inadvertently bound by European Union rulings for many years. Instead, clause 26 ensures that we and our courts will be able to determine the extent to which courts are bound by historic Court of Justice of the European Union decisions after the implementation period. This will be done sensibly, so I can provide some reassurance to my hon. Friend the Member for Bromley and Chislehurst. The Bill commits us to consult the senior judiciary across the UK before making regulations, and we do not intend this in any way to upset long-standing constitutional principles such as the structure and hierarchy of the court system. This clause simply enables us to take back control of our laws and disentangle ourselves from the EU’s legal order, but in a way that will be consulted on carefully with the judiciary, recognising the structures and hierarchies that exist there.

New clauses 1, 6 and 17 and amendment (a) to new clause 6 all seek to introduce various statutory roles for Parliament, and for the devolved Administrations and legislatures, in the future relationship negotiations. These are unnecessary requirements that risk impeding and delaying negotiations. New clause 6 in particular imposes onerous requirements for consultation and impact assessments, but would make it very challenging indeed to conclude negotiations by the end of 2020.