Published: Thu, March 14, 2019
Global News | By Blake Casey

Pound falls sharply on Brexit deal advice

Pound falls sharply on Brexit deal advice

The UK is set to leave the European Union on March 29 after a referendum in 2016 in which a 51.9 per cent of voters opted to leave the world's largest trading bloc.

Speaking on Mrs May's behalf on Wednesday, Environment Secretary Michael Gove urged MPs to back the Government in ruling out a no deal Brexit scenario as they prepare to vote on a way forward.

"If there is a solution to the current impasse, it can only be found in London", it said, adding that "today's vote has significantly increased the likelihood of a "no-deal" Brexit".

May has said she would not give in to any solution that would divide the United Kingdom and negotiated for a United Kingdom -wide backstop.

The prime minister, hoarse after Monday's late-night talks, told MPs: "Let me be clear".

May warned lawmakers that "voting against leaving without a deal and for an extension does not solve the problems we face".

Should MPs reject that, there will be another vote on whether Parliament wants to seek an extension to Article 50 - delaying the UK's departure beyond the current March 29 deadline.

Mrs May has stressed that would not resolve the divisions in the Commons and could instead hand Brussels the power to set conditions on the kind of Brexit on offer "or even moving to a second referendum".

Failure could potentially leave the country crashing out with no deal, sparking shockwaves through global markets and possible question marks over May's leadership.

Conservative lawmaker Nicky Morgan said May's position will become "less and less tenable" if she suffers more defeats in parliament this week.

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The British parliament will vote later Tuesday on whether to back the withdrawal agreement, after May returned from meetings in Strasbourg brandishing what she said were new guarantees from Europe.

Sterling rose on news of the deal but then gave up its gains by mid-morning and was trading $1.3163 at 1040 GMT.

British Prime Minister Theresa May (R) and Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar hold bilateral talks during the first Arab-European Summit, Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt, February 25, 2019.

This is also a reiteration of the main Brexit divorce deal agreed in November.

"If there is no support for the Withdrawal Agreement tomorrow, perhaps there is no support for Brexit at all", he suggested, implicitly warning Brexiteer dreams may be thwarted by pro-Europeans in parliament.

Many "Aussie" traders, meanwhile, will be awaiting the publication of the Westpac consumer confidence for March today, and with any signs of an uptick this could see the AUD/GBP exchange rate rise further.

May is unwilling to abandon her hard-won Brexit agreement and might try to put it to Parliament a third time, although the latest margin of defeat makes that tricky.

Germany and other EU nations welcomed the overnight agreement reached between European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and British Prime Minister Theresa May as a last-ditch effort to avoid a chaotic Brexit at the end of the month.

Britons voted by 52-48 percent in 2016 to leave the European Union but the decision has not only divided the main parties but also exposed deep rifts in British society, bringing concerns about immigration and globalisation to the fore.

Britain's political impasse over Brexit has raised fears of a chaotic "no-deal" Brexit that could mean major disruption for businesses and people in the United Kingdom and the 27 remaining European Union countries, with tariffs and border checks imposed on trade between the two.

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