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Leaving the European Union - Statement

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 7:16 pm on 21st January 2019.

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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 7:16 pm, 21st January 2019

As my noble and learned friend will know, neither the EU nor the UK wishes to use the backstop. We have already set out a number of other mechanisms that could be used if a deal is not completed by December 2020, as we believe it will be; for instance, extending the implementation period or looking at facilities for technology. There are other options but, in relation to the backstop itself, the assurances that the Prime Minister brought back from her conversations with the EU did not satisfy Members across the House so we are continuing to work on that. The Prime Minister is focused on solutions and she is interested in the ideas of others but, of course, we have to make sure that whatever we take to the EU is something that it will ultimately be able to agree with.