We are now just a week away from when the Prime Minister is due to announce the next meaningful vote on Brexit and we are just 5 weeks away from when the UK is due to leave the European Union.
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The Chancellor Philip Hammond has suggested that MPs could get another vote on May’s next agreement next week. At the moment the current expectation is that the next meaningful vote will take place on 27th February but that also depends on how much progress is made in talks between the UK and the European Union.
However, if progress stalls between the two sides the debate will be about what the UK will look to do in the event of Brexit happening in the next 5 weeks.
In the meantime many politicians have suggested that they would try and plan to have a vote which enables the UK to extend Article 50 if no deal has been agreed before the 29th March.
Clearly, as has been demonstrated in the last few months, politicians are not in favour of the current deal and want to avoid a no deal Brexit but as yet they have also not confirmed between themselves what a deal would look like.
The Irish border issue remains unsolved and in its current guise is unlikely to be approved if the vote takes place next week, which means that the chance of a deal being agreed before the end of March becomes increasing unlikely.
EU President Jean-Claude Juncker has claimed that there was no breakthrough in talks when he met with Theresa May in Brussels. Ahead of the meeting Juncker said, "we will have a friendly talk tomorrow but I don’t expect a breakthrough". Both have also claimed that they are committed to avoid a hard border on the island of Ireland but as yet not a lot has changed.
The PM claimed, "I’ve underlined the need for us to see legally binding changes to the backstop which ensure it cannot be definite, that’s what is required if a deal is going to pass the House of Commons".
The pound has made some gains during the course of this week as although there is little further clarity as to what may happen in the next few weeks what is apparent is that neither side wants a ‘no deal’ Brexit and this is likely to have given the pound some support against a number of different currencies.
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