This week in Parliament | DMA

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This week in Parliament


Wowee! What a week! Ministerial resignations, government compromises, the Commons slapping down the Lords’ amendments, a Westminster party leader being thrown out of the chamber, then SNP then walking out of Prime Minister’s questions and some big names being thrown across the chamber.

As ridiculous and frustrating as the antics are, for us politicos, it’s what we live for. *Rubs hands excitedly*

So what are the key developments? And what do they mean for you?


Things didn’t look so good for the government before this week. They had been embarrassed by the House of Lords who amended the proposed EU Withdrawal bill so that it veered away from the government’s proposals towards a softer side of Brexit.

Nonetheless, the government managed to persuade potential Tory rebels to stay on their side, meaning the government defeated all proposed amendments by the House of Lords.

As it stands, the positions postulated by the government would see the UK withdrawing from a number of EU institutions.

Some thought that, even if the Lords were defeated on most of their amendments, there was perhaps enough support in Parliament to accept an amendment that would keep the UK in the European Economic Area.

However, this too was defeated.

So what does this mean?

Being part of EU institutions comes with obligations. However, they also offer benefits. For example, the Digital Single Market—which is a part of the EEA—offers the opportunity for companies who are part of the EEA to trade goods online. This is a crucial part of the prosperity of marketers in the UK. The digital single market has given UK businesses a great opportunity for growth and reach. The DMA has been working with the government to maintain this link.

While it may indeed be possible to retain membership of the DSM without being members of the EEA, it is less likely the EU would offer the benefits of being part of the DSM without receiving the benefits of having another country with which to trade in the EEA.

The DMA will be working with government and industry to push for full alignment with EU digital regulation. This way we can ensure our industry retains access to customers and businesses which they have access to currently.

Devolution disputes

Another big point of contention is the ongoing ruckus between the Scottish and Westminster Parliaments over the reclaiming of powers from Brussels. As it stands, there are some things are technically devolved to the Scottish Parliament, but which are decided and administered at an EU level. When we leave the EU, the Scottish Parliament wants these powers straight back within their control. Westminster, however, wants to have control of the powers to ensure that there is an orderly transfer of bureaucracy from one government to the other.

If this is confusing, picture a large seabird going fishing to feed its young. The big bird (which, in this instance, represents the EU) brings back the fishes (regulatory control) to the nest in which two flightless and screeching chicklings (Westminster and Holyrood Parliaments) vie and peck each other to be the first to receive the regurgitated remains of fiscal and administrative powers. I mean fish.

Anyway, I think we can agree that made things clearer and more palatable.

The long and short is that, in theory, if and when regulatory powers are transferred to Scotland, there could be different rules between Scotland and the rest of the UK. This isn’t catastrophic – there are different laws and regulations already. However, it does mean there may be regulatory changes members need to watch out for.

Whatever happens, the DMA will be on point to inform you of what’s going on in the world of politics and policy and how it affects you.

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