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House of Commons Hansard
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Leaving the EU: Balance of Powers
01 November 2017
Volume 630
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9. If he will hold discussions with the National Assembly of Wales on the effect of the UK leaving the EU on the balance of powers held between the UK Government and the Welsh Government. [901495]

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13. If he will hold discussions with the National Assembly of Wales on the effect of the UK leaving the EU on the balance of powers held between the UK Government and the Welsh Government. [901499]

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I hold regular discussions with the First Minister and Assembly Members, as well as with local authorities, industry representatives and third sector organisations, on matters relating to the UK leaving the EU.

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Following the last Joint Ministerial Committee on EU Negotiations meeting of Welsh, Scottish and UK Governments, an agreed set of principles on areas where EU law currently intersects with that of devolved competence was published. Will the Secretary of State please update the House on what tangible actions the UK Government have taken to institute those principles?

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There are 64 areas of law that intersect with the Welsh Government, and I think that there are 111 that relate to Scotland. There is an awful lot of technical work going on between officials in the Scottish and Welsh Governments and the UK Administration. There are many functions beneath that, but we are working positively to establish which of them can be devolved as quickly as possible when powers are returned from the European Union to the UK.

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Will the right hon. Gentleman, like the Secretary of State for Scotland, promise the Welsh Assembly a powers bonanza following Brexit, and if so, unlike the Secretary of State for Scotland, can he name one power that will actually be devolved?

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I have mentioned that officials are working on 64 areas, and we want to move forward so that the powers of the Scottish and Welsh Governments will be extended, but we also need to maintain the integrity of the UK market. We need to remember that everything we are doing needs to suit business, because we want business in Scotland to continue to export and work throughout the UK, but we also want business in Wales to have the opportunity perhaps to take some of the Scottish market.