Published: Fri, January 10, 2020

Peers warned not to hamper Brexit Bill progress after it clears Commons

Peers warned not to hamper Brexit Bill progress after it clears Commons

Following his comprehensive general election victory last month, Johnson's EU Withdrawal Agreement Bill faced little Commons opposition as it sidestepped the parliamentary impasse that had so dogged May's administration.

It was the last opportunity for the MPs to reject the bill before it is sent to the House of Lords after which it will be put into legislation in the coming weeks.

Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson speaks at the parliament, which reconvenes after the UK Supreme Court ruled that his suspension of the parliament was unlawful, in London, Britain, September 25, 2019, in this screen grab taken from video.

Winding up the debate on the bill, Brexit Secretary Steve Barclay said: "This evening the bill will pass to the other place with a very clear mandate from this House that now is the time to move forwards".

With the Lords due to scrutinise Boris Johnson's final version of the Withdrawal Act, there are markedly less concerns of the European Union divorce further being delayed, while trade issues with Brussels are still waiting to be resolved.

The Commons voted 330 to 231 to approve the Withdrawal Agreement Bill at its third reading, putting an end to months of late night votes and government defeats.

Trade negotiations can not begin until after Brexit, which will trigger an 11 month transition period preserving Britain's membership of the EU's single market and customs union.

"We will have to prioritise", she said in a speech to the London School of Economics university, warning of "tough talks ahead".

He also insisted that Britain's goal to have a full free trade deal by the end of the year was unrealistic.


By setting a deadline of December 2020 on the transition period for the two sides to agree a deal, Johnson will immediately set the clock ticking on another deadline, having only just put to bed one major aspect of Brexit.

"We will be pushing for a good deal and we will give it our all".

"If the United Kingdom wants an open link with us for the products - zero tariffs, zero quotas - we need to be careful about zero dumping at the same time", Mr Barnier told a conference in Stockholm.

"We can not expect to agree on every aspect of this new partnership", Mr Barnier said, adding, "We are ready to do our best in the 11 months".

Theresa May had spent nearly two years trying to get a deal through the house, and before the general election Mr Johnson had also tried and failed to get it through.

Mr Michel, a former prime minister of Belgium, warned that the European Union would also insist on level playing field guarantees, which are British commitments to not undercut European Union rules on state aid, tax and the environment.

Conservative former minister Mark Francois has also led efforts within parliament for Big Ben to bong at 11pm on January 31 to mark the UK's departure from the EU.

Brexit will come a step closer today as legislation enshrining Boris Johnson's divorce deal is finally approved by MPs.

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