MPs have again ruled out Theresa May’s Brexit deal – on the day the UK was supposed to leave the European Union. It was a case of third time unlucky, as MPs voted against the Prime Minister’s ‘blind Brexit’ withdrawal proposal by 344 votes to 286 - a majority of 58.
With the UK now due to leave the EU on 12 April there is not likely to be enough time to legislate for a deal. If the UK wanted a further extension, it would need to hold European elections, says Mrs May.
“The implications of the House’s decision are grave. The legal default now is that the United Kingdom is due to leave the European Union on 12 April.
“In just 14 days’ time. This is not enough time to agree, legislate for and ratify a deal, and yet the House has been clear it will not permit leaving without a deal. And so we will have to agree an alternative way forward.”
Labour leader, Jeremy Corbyn says if Theresa May cannot change the deal on the table, she should call a general election so the country could decide what to do.
An emergency EU summit has been hastily arranged for Wednesday 10 April, two days before the new deadline for the UK’s departure. The European Commission says, “a ‘no-deal’ scenario on 12 April is now a likely scenario.”
As a result of the vote, the pound fell from a daily high of 1.311 in typical mid-market rates against the US Dollar to 1.299 soon afterwards.
David Johnson, Halo Financial’s Founding Director, says, “The market showed its concern over the outcome, as the Pound fell below $1.30. Previously, it has been most worried about the uncertainty caused by a no-deal Brexit. Now it is worried about the possibility of a general election.”
In a bid to finally get her EU withdrawal agreement approved, Mrs May put forward the withdrawal agreement part of her Brexit deal without the political declaration.
Even so, the European Commission said had the deal passed, the UK could leave the European Union without passing the political declaration.
The next chance for MPs to reach agreement comes on Monday as more Indicative Votes are being put to the test.
British business leaders again condemned the situation as “a failure” and “a disaster” for the UK economy and jobs.
Mike Cherry, the chairman of the Federation of Small Businesses, says, “On the day that we were supposed to be leaving the European Union, all we have is yet another political failure to chalk up.
“Responsibility for this deepening political crisis lies squarely at the feet of politicians who have clearly stopped listening to the business community.”
Stephen Phipson, Chief Executive Officer of the manufacturers’ organisation, Make UK, says, “This now makes the nightmare of a “no-deal” scenario more likely than ever. This would be a disaster for the UK economy as a whole and for the 2.7 million manufacturing jobs around the UK.”
If Brexit is causing concern for your currency exchange, get in touch
with the experts at Halo Financial to guide you through.