Trade Bill - Committee (3rd Day)

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 6:00 pm on 30th January 2019.

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Photo of Lord Hannay of Chiswick Lord Hannay of Chiswick Crossbench 6:00 pm, 30th January 2019

I really plead with the noble Viscount not to say that again. We all know that if, through inadvertence or incompetence, the Government take us over the cliff on 29 March, this Bill—by then, presumably, an Act—will be the only instrument we have to guide our trade policy. Therefore, will he please stop saying that it is only about continuity and admit, as his noble friend Lady Fairhead did when replying to an earlier amendment, that it is meant to be capable of providing for both eventualities? Will it provide not only for the eventuality in which it is a continuity measure that lasts for the transitional period—what is sometimes laughingly called the implementation phase, in which nothing is implemented—but for circumstances in which we have to operate an independent trade policy on 30 March 2019?