In the weeks following the EU referendum I arranged public meetings in the Vale to set out the Government’s response to the vote and to take questions from local people. The response was overwhelming. Over two hundred people turned up to the meetings in Cowbridge in Barry, sharing their hopes, concerns and queries. As we approach the next milestone, the triggering of Article 50, I want to give Vale residents the opportunity to once again ask me direct questions about the Government’s plan for Brexit.
I will be holding two meetings; one on March 23rd in Dinas Powys at 6:30pm at the Lee Hall, and the other on March 30th in Llantwit Major at Llantonian Hall. Anyone living in the Vale of Glamorgan is welcome to attend.
I voted ‘remain’ on June 23rd because at the time I thought that, on balance, it would be better for the economy in the short term. As such, I can understand the economic concerns that many have had about our changing relationship with the EU. After the vote however, I was immediately struck by the pragmatic and often optimistic tone of business leaders. This has since been coupled with stronger economic performance than expected and, most importantly, certainty from government.
Indeed, a great many people who, like me, supported ‘remain’ have not just accepted the result of the referendum, but embraced the opportunities that exist for our country to become an even more successful global trading nation.
We have the opportunity at a great moment of national change to step back and ask ourselves what kind of country we want to be. The Prime Minister and the Government have a clear answer. We want the United Kingdom to emerge from this period of change stronger, fairer more united and more outward-looking than ever before.
The Government has a strong plan for a smooth and orderly Brexit. We want to have reached an agreement about our future partnership with the EU by the time that the two year Article 50 process has concluded. From that point onwards, we expect a process of phased implementation.
Throughout the Brexit process, we will pursue as much free trade as possible with the EU and prepare strike free trade agreements across the world. We will control migration, protect rights for workers and seek to guarantee rights for British nationals in the EU and EU nationals in the UK.
If you would like to ask me more about this plan, please do attend my Brexit Q&A in Dinas Powys or Llantwit Major.