British PM Theresa May loses key vote on Brexit procedure in Parliament

New Delhi, News Nation Bureau | Updated : 10 January 2019, 12:20 AM
British Prime Minister
British Prime Minister

British Prime Minister lost a key vote on Brexit procedure in Parliament on Wednesday. Rebel Tory MPs have joined forces with Labour to inflict a fresh blow on May's government in a Commons Brexit vote. The results mean the May government will have to come up with fresh plans within three days if her EU withdrawal deal is rejected by MPs next week, reports BBC.

Today's blow to May came a day after MPs on Tuesday voted to scupper a no-deal Brexit.  Over 20 MPs from across political parties on Wednesday tabled an amendment that would give the prime minister three days to set out a 'Plan B' if the House voted against her Brexit deal next Tuesday.

While 308 lawmakers supported the amendment, 297 voted against it.            The amendment gives MPs the chance to formally put forward alternatives to her deal for the first time, including a people's vote and the Norway and EFTA "soft Brexit" options.

If UK decides on a Norway-style Brexit it would join the EU and join the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) and, through the latter, become a member of the European Economic Area (EEA). A country can be a EEA member only if it is in the EU or EFTA.

This arrangement would give UK a full access to the single market, which means there would be no new non-tariff barriers, which would have the least impact on the British economy.

Under the arrangement, though Britain would not be ruled over by the European Court of Justice, it would still have to be held accountable by the EFTA court, which means the UK would not be completely free of EU jurisdiction.

The UK will officially leave the EU on March 29. 

(With PTI inputs)

First Published: Wednesday, January 09, 2019 08:43 PM
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