Taxation (Post-transition Period) Bill

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 4:01 pm on 9th December 2020.

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Photo of Bill Cash Bill Cash Chair, European Scrutiny Committee, Chair, European Scrutiny Committee 4:01 pm, 9th December 2020

As somebody who has taken a great interest in Irish matters since I came into this House, I can only say the answer to that is yes. However, I also know that there is an enormous amount of malicious rubbish talked about the implications for the hard border. We are not going to impose a hard border. If anybody does, it will be the EU. If the EU gets its way on these matters, believe me, we are going to end up with difficulties that will have been created by the EU, not by us. I remember Martin Selmayr saying that the price the United Kingdom would have to pay would be the loss of Northern Ireland. I mean, it is as bad as that. I therefore say that I do take a great interest in it, because I want the Union to survive and to prosper. I believe it can, but it will not be able to if we end up with provisions that undermine the sovereignty of the United Kingdom Parliament.

On the specific question of state aid, that is a matter within the scope of the Bill. I therefore expect our amendment to be able to be called. Precisely what I do about it at that time will depend on the outcome of the negotiations, but I am not going to buy a pig in a poke and accept the idea that it is all over and done with because somebody who happens to be a Government Minister made a statement yesterday from Brussels and then came to the House to put forward his case today. We have not seen the details, so I want to reserve my position until I know exactly what the outcome of the negotiations is. I would warrant that the 70% of the British people would agree with me.