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Peers committee on Brexit visit to Gibraltar

The EU Select Committee of the House of Lords will travel to Gibraltar this week on a two-day fact-finding visit that will act as a follow-up to a report on Gibraltar published by peers a year ago this month.

Led by the committee’s Conservative chairman, Lord Boswell of Aynho, the peers will meet the Chief Minister and will visit the border with Spain.

The will also meet ministers and other members of the Gibraltar Parliament, as well as the Gibraltar Chamber of Commerce, the Gibraltar Federation of Small Businesses, representatives of the port and airport, and members of the Cross-Frontier Group.

In their report last year, peers on the EU Select Committee underscored that British Government’s “moral duty” to stand up for the Rock, backing the double-lock commitment and stressing that sovereignty was not up for discussion.

While the Rock must be part of the UK deal with the EU, practical aspects such as managing border flow could be subject to “specific bilateral arrangements” for the benefit not just of Gibraltar but the neighbouring Spanish region too, they said.

Britain, Gibraltar and Spain should “redouble their efforts” to find a structure through which “open lines of communication” can be maintained to promote cooperation and good relations, and that this should be done “in tandem” with Brexit negotiations, the Lords added in their report.

The visit by the Lords’ EU Select Committee this week underlines the continued interest that Gibraltar is generating in the UK Parliament, and the support that it enjoys from MPs and peers across the political spectrum.

Even after publication of their 2017 report, the Lords continued to press the UK Government for information on Gibraltar.


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