David Davis will today warn Brussels it would be ‘unnecessary, inappropriate and unprecedented’ for European judges to have power over British courts after we leave the EU
David Davis will today warn Brussels it would be ‘unnecessary, inappropriate and unprecedented’ for European judges to have power over British courts after we leave the EU.
The Brexit Secretary will declare that Britain ‘will take back control of its laws’ as the judges in Luxembourg will no longer have supremacy over the country’s courts.
But Mr Davis last night faced accusations of a ‘climbdown’ as he will stop short of demanding a completely clean break from the European Court of Justice.
In the latest in a series of papers setting out Britain’s negotiating position, he will reject the European Commission’s call for the rights of EU citizens living in Britain to be enforced by the ECJ following the country’s departure.
Mr Davis will make clear ‘it is not necessary or appropriate for the European Court of Justice to have direct jurisdiction over a non-member state’ and say ‘such an arrangement would be unprecedented’.
The Brexit Secretary will, however, leave open the door to the ECJ having some influence on our laws, saying British judges will have the option of taking account of judgments made at the court in Luxembourg following our departure.
But he will insist that these will no longer be automatically incorporated into British case law and the ECJ will have no power over our courts.
Liberal Democrat leader Sir Vince Cable last night claimed it was a ‘climbdown’ by the Government as he argued that Theresa May’s Brexit ‘red lines are becoming more blurred by the day’.
But Eurosceptics said they would be happy with the plan as long as Parliament and British judges have the choice of whether to follow rulings made by European judges.
The Brexit Secretary will declare that Britain ‘will take back control of its laws’ as the judges in Luxembourg will no longer have supremacy over the country’s courts
Tory MP Jacob Rees-Mogg said: ‘The key point is that there should not be any direct effect of decisions by the ECJ or any new tribunal on the UK.
‘As long as that is the case it is a matter of detail not principle.
Osborne mocks May’s ex-aides
George Osborne has mocked the Prime Minister’s former advisers – saying his Northern Powerhouse idea had outlived their careers.
The ex-Chancellor accused them of trying to erase all mention of the investment scheme since he was sacked last summer.
However, he pointed out that Theresa May’s joint chiefs of staff – Nick Timothy and Fiona Hill – had since been forced to resign following the election in June.
Writing in the Financial Times, he said: ‘I left office and there was a risk that the Northern Powerhouse would end with my own political career.
‘It very nearly did. We know that there was a systematic attempt by Mrs May’s advisers (apparently without her knowledge) to eradicate all mention of the initiative. Thankfully, the idea has proved more enduring than those advisers.’
Mr Osborne – who is chairman of the Northern Powerhouse Partnership – has also demanded the Prime Minister commit to building high-speed rail links across the North to unlock its economic potential.
Mr Timothy last night responded with a swipe at Mr Osborne. He posted on Twitter: ‘Sorry George Osborne repeated lies about my views. In government, I supported the Northern Powerhouse. I could hardly do otherwise having lived in Midlands and North for longer than George Osborne.’
‘In terms of historic ECJ rulings, they will have effect on continuing UK law and that is perfectly reasonable because that provides continuity from the day before we leave to the day we leave.
‘Thereafter our courts may look to them in the way they look to other courts as a source of information, but not as a source of authority. That again is perfectly reasonable.’
The paper will set out various models of how disputes are resolved over existing international agreements, such as trade deals between countries.
One example will be the European Free Trade Agreement court, which oversees the EU’s relationship with Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein.
However, Whitehall sources last night stressed that they were not looking to replicate any of the existing models as they do not want an ‘off the shelf solution’.
A UK Government spokesman said: ‘We have long been clear that in leaving the EU we will bring an end to the direct jurisdiction of the Court of Justice of the European Union in the UK.
‘It is in the interests of both the UK and the EU, and of our citizens and businesses, that the rights and obligations agreed between us can be relied upon and enforced in appropriate ways.
‘It is also in everyone’s interest that, where disputes arise between the UK and the EU on the application or interpretation of these obligations, those disputes can be resolved efficiently and effectively.’
A source said the paper delivered on Mrs May’s speech at the Tory party conference last October when she said: ‘We are not leaving the EU… only to return to the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice.’
The Prime Minister will today visit bus manufacturer Alexander Dennis in Guildford, which has secured a £44million finance deal to sell double-deckers to Mexico.
George Osborne pointed out that Theresa May’s joint chiefs of staff – Nick Timothy and Fiona Hill – had since been forced to resign following the election in June
- Ministers have launched a bid to protect Britain’s legal sector by calling for courts here to be allowed to hear cross-border cases in the same way after Brexit. They want to keep arrangements with Brussels on some disputes that involve more than one European country.
July surplus is our first for 15 years
Taxpayers have handed the Treasury its first July budget surplus in 15 years in a boost for Chancellor Philip Hammond.
The Exchequer collected £200million more than it spent last month – the first time this has happened in July since 2002. It is a sharp turnaround from last year when spending exceeded income by £300million.
But borrowing in the first four months of the tax year, which started in April, was higher than a year earlier. The national debt stands at more than £1.75 trillion and is likely to hit £2 trillion in coming years as Britain continues to live beyond its means.
And the Chancellor has indicated he will only balance the books by the middle of the next decade, meaning Britain would have been running deficits from 2001 to 2025.
That would be the longest period of consecutive deficits since Britain was stuck in the red between 1793 and 1817 – covering the period of the Napoleonic wars.
- Flights could be cancelled and the UK’s air travel industry ruined before Brexit unless the Government quickly strikes a deal with the EU, a report has claimed.
The paper, compiled on behalf of Britain’s airports, said a stalemate during negotiations could see passenger numbers fall by 41 per cent.
The concerns are prompted by the lack of a back-up system to replace current EU agreements – which allow airlines to operate unlimited flights across the continent – if no Brexit deal is reached.