Evaluation of UK’s international obligations
Policy Exchange have published a report entitled Global Britain, Global Challenges, considering how to make aid more effective.
A report from The Henry Jackson Society, “Foreign Funded Islamist Extremism in the UK”, has highlighted the need for a public inquiry into the foreign-based funding of Islamist extremism. This criticism for the UK’s failure to raise questions over Saudi Arabia’s role in funding extremism will follow Theresa May at the G20 talks at which she is claiming her priority to be disrupting terrorist groups from accessing finance.
The UK has been censured by an international committee for its failure to notify the German public of the potential environmental impacts of Hinkley Point C, as this violates the Aarhus convention that says major projects must consult citizens on environmental impacts.
UK’s post-Brexit relationship with the EU
NatCen has published the 34th British Social Attitudes survey, ‘A kind-hearted by not soft-hearted country’ which has considered two popular explanations for the Brexit vote.
The Government Legal Department’s annual report has stated that preparations for leaving the EU will be the “single biggest challenge” for the Government and its lawyers in the coming years.
The Times (paywall) has reported that the Brexit debate has united City law firms, with senior partners agreeing that ‘the worst’ outcome would be a hard Brexit.
Jeremy Hunt has been photographed holding a briefing note which says that a ‘hard Brexit means people fleeing UK’.
Henderson Chambers have published a paper considering the future of dispute resolution post-exit.
According to Michel Barnier, Britain is does not yet fully understand the consequences of leaving the EU, and in his speech at the European Economic and Social Committee he stated that the UK will become a third country post-Brexit. Meanwhile European leaders are questioning whether Theresa May will survive long enough to negotiate the UK’s exit, and the Financial Times has argued that a diminished Britain must be realistic about the Brexit talks. However, The Spectator has argued that a good deal is looking likelier than ever.
Shadow Brexit secretary Keir Starmer has called on Theresa May to drop her ‘red line’ over the ECJ in the hope of retaining access to key EU groups including the medicines agency. Equally, an open letter to the Financial Times from ministers Jeremy Hunt and Greg Clark has stated that the UK wants to continue to work with the EU on medicines. This is discussed in the Financial Times.
Senior civil servants have stated that the cabinet is deeply divided over Britain’s aims in the Brexit negotiations, and there is a turf war with ministers competing to shape the process. Meanwhile Government insiders have reported a change of mood at DExEU, with growing Treasury influence helping force ministers to choose between prioritising economic interests or sovereignty.
Chairman of Open Europe, Lord Wolfson, has argued that less haste and a more open attitude can make a success of Brexit; delivering an economic renaissance for the UK if managed in the right way.
The House of Lords EU External Affairs Sub-Committee has explored the Common Foreign and Security Policy and the Common Security and Defence Policy post-Brexit in a double evidence session. Meanwhile The Lords also questioned David Davis on the Brexit negotiations.
Anthony Costello, for the LSE Brexit blog, has argued that £1bn in extra public spending is unlikely to compensate for the effects of Brexit on Northern Ireland: a region which is heavily dependent on agriculture and which has benefited greatly from EU funds.