Brexit: Negotiations - Statement

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 11:48 am on 15th November 2018.

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Photo of Baroness Evans of Bowes Park Baroness Evans of Bowes Park Leader of the House of Lords and Lord Privy Seal 11:48 am, 15th November 2018

First, I am very happy to tell the House that I fully support the Prime Minister and I back this deal. I would not be standing here if I did not—and I am very grateful that everyone seems so happy to see me.

The noble Lord and the noble Baroness asked about the outline political declaration. Negotiations will now continue to finalise the full political declaration, focusing on adding detail, defining further what balance of rights and obligations should apply in the context of trading goods and identifying which additional operational capabilities should be prioritised for consideration in the context of internal security. We are determined to conclude a full political declaration by the end of November, bringing the Article 50 negotiations to a close. Once agreed, we will bring that deal to Parliament. We have agreed, as the outline document shows, the scope of a future relationship, signalling the ambition on both sides. We have agreed to the creation of a free trade area for goods, combining deep regulatory and customs co-operation with zero tariffs and no fees, charges or quantitative restrictions across all goods sectors—the first such agreement between an advanced economy and the EU. Common ground has been reached on our intention to have a close relationship on services and investment, including financial services; on the desire for wide-ranging sectoral co-operation, including on transport and energy; and on fisheries, recognising that the UK will be an independent coastal state.

The noble Lord asked about the European arrest warrant. He is correct that it is still under negotiation, but the EU and UK have agreed to swift and effective arrangements enabling the UK and member states to extradite suspected and convicted persons efficiently and expeditiously. Both the UK and EU recognise the continued importance of close and effective operational co-operation and recognise the risks of reverting to the Council of Europe conventions. I am afraid to say to the noble Lord that we will not be holding a second referendum.