02:16PM, Wednesday 30 December 2020
Maidenhead MP Theresa May spoke of the importance of the UK playing its part in an inter-connected world as politicians debated the country’s trade agreement with the EU.
Parliament was recalled today so MPs could debate and vote on the EU (Future Relationship) Bill which was struck with the trading bloc on Christmas Eve.
Mrs May, who failed to get Commons approval for a withdrawal deal during her time as Prime Minister, told the House of Commons the country should not become ‘isolationist’ following its departure from the EU on January 1.
She said: “Sovereignty has underpinned the negotiations since Article 50 was triggered. Sovereignty does not mean isolationism, it does not mean we never accept someone else’s rules, it does not mean exceptionalism.
“It is important as we go forward that we recognise we live in an inter-connected world.”
Mrs May told the House of Commons the agreement provided the EU with benefits in trade but failed to deliver a ‘ground-breaking’ arrangement over financial services.
She added: “The arrangement is clear that future negotiation on these points is possible and I hope the Government will goes to these negotiations with an acuity and vigour.”
She also criticised Labour leader Kier Starmer for failing to vote in favour of the ‘better deal’ she offered to MPs back in 2019.
Mike Miller, president of the Maidenhead Chamber of Commerce, urged companies in the Royal Borough to embrace the new way of doing business following the UK’s impending departure from the EU.
He told the Advertiser: “Overall the deal is a good one. If we’re going to leave the European Union and maintain sovereignty we have to have a good trade deal with our neighbours, the EU, and we need to maintain very close relationships with all the countries in the EU.”
“It’s swings and roundabouts, some people are going to be a bit annoyed, others are not,” he added.
“But this is the new way of doing it and businesses have got to embrace that and there’s plenty of people including the Chamber who are prepared to offer advice and people shouldn’t be in any way scared of it or feel they’re going to lose any business because the reality is, no they won’t.”
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