What is the Great Repeal Bill?
The historic proposal aims to end the European Union's legal supremacy in the UK by converting all EU requirements into British law as soon as Britain exits the bloc.
The Great Repeal Bill will instantly annul the 1972 European Communities Act (ECA), which gives EU law instant effect in the UK, and give Parliament the power to absorb parts of EU legislation into UK law and scrap elements it does not want to keep.
It will include powers to change laws using secondary legislation as negotiations over the UK’s future relationship with its partners continue. Major amendments or new laws may be put forward in separate bills.
"It’s very simple. At the moment we leave, Britain must be back in control. And that means EU law must cease to apply," said Brexit Secretary David Davis. "EU law will be transposed into domestic law, wherever practical, on exit day. It will be for elected politicians here to make the changes to reflect the outcome of our negotiation and our exit."
The process will be separate from Article 50 negotiations, which will activate the formal mechanism to leave the EU. The legislation will only be prepared by Whitehall and will be debated by MPs and peers.
When will it happen?
The legislation will be introduced in the next parliamentary session beginning with Queen’s speech next May.
It will pre-empt the two year process of leaving the EU, which will begin when the Government triggers Article 50 - a process Theresa May says will begin in early 2017.
What experts have said about Brexit
What experts have said about Brexit
1/11 Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond
The Chancellor claims London can still be a world financial hub despite Brexit “One of Britain’s great strengths is the ability to offer and aggregate all of the services the global financial services industry needs” “This has not changed as a result of the EU referendum and I will do everything I can to ensure the City of London retains its position as the world’s leading international financial centre.”
2/11 Yanis Varoufakis
Greece's former finance minister compared the UK relations with the EU bloc with a well-known song by the Eagles: “You can check out any time you like, as the Hotel California song says, but you can't really leave. The proof is Theresa May has not even dared to trigger Article 50. It's like Harrison Ford going into Indiana Jones' castle and the path behind him fragmenting. You can get in, but getting out is not at all clear”
3/11 Michael O’Leary
Ryanair boss says UK will be ‘screwed’ by EU in Brexit trade deals: “I have no faith in the politicians in London going on about how ‘the world will want to trade with us’. The world will want to screw you – that's what happens in trade talks,” he said. “They have no interest in giving the UK a deal on trade”
4/11 Tim Martin
JD Wetherspoon's chairman has said claims that the UK would see serious economic consequences from a Brexit vote were "lurid" and wrong: “We were told it would be Armageddon from the OECD, from the IMF, David Cameron, the chancellor and President Obama who were predicting locusts in the fields and tidal waves in the North Sea"
5/11 Mark Carney
Governor of Bank of England is 'serene' about Bank of England's Brexit stance: “I am absolutely serene about the … judgments made both by the MPC and the FPC”
6/11 Christine Lagarde
IMF chief urges quick Brexit to reduce economic uncertainty: “We want to see clarity sooner rather than later because we think that a lack of clarity feeds uncertainty, which itself undermines investment appetites and decision making”
7/11 Inga Beale
Lloyd’s chief executive says Brexit is a major issue: "Clearly the UK's referendum on its EU membership is a major issue for us to deal with and we are now focusing our attention on having in place the plans that will ensure Lloyd's continues trading across Europe”
8/11 Colm Kelleher
President of US bank Morgan Stanley says City of London ‘will suffer’ as result of the EU referendum: “I do believe, and I said prior to the referendum, that the City of London will suffer as result of Brexit. The issue is how much”
9/11 Richard Branson
Virgin founder believes we've lost a THIRD of our value because of Brexit and cancelled a deal worth 3,000 jobs: We're not any worse than anybody else, but I suspect we've lost a third of our value which is dreadful for people in the workplace.' He continued: "We were about to do a very big deal, we cancelled that deal, that would have involved 3,000 jobs, and that’s happening all over the country"
10/11 Barack Obama
US President believes Britain was wrong to vote to leave the EU: "It is absolutely true that I believed pre-Brexit vote and continue to believe post-Brexit vote that the world benefited enormously from the United Kingdom's participation in the EU. We are fully supportive of a process that is as little disruptive as possible so that people around the world can continue to benefit from economic growth"
11/11 Kristin Forbes
American economist and an external member of the Monetary Policy Committee of the Bank of England argues that the economy had been “less stormy than many expected” following the shock referendum result: “For now…the economy is experiencing some chop, but no tsunami. The adverse winds could quickly pick up – and merit a stronger policy response. But recently they have shifted to a more favourable direction”
It will pass through Parliament at the same time as negotiations take place in Brussels and it will activate the end of the authority of the ECA in the UK on day one of Brexit.
What is 1972 European Communities Act?
The UK Parliament passed the European Communities Act in 1972 which gave instant effect to EU law.
This means if there is a clash between an act of UK Parliament and EU Law, EU law will always suceed.
The European Court of Justice (ECJ) interprets EU law with judgments that were binding on all member states.
What will the Bill mean?
The legislation will end the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice in the UK.
As EU laws are debated there is likely to be a large number of requests for changes from MPs, peers and third parties, however it is not yet clear how negotiations will play out.
Concerns have been raised as to whether changes to EU law could put workers’ rights and environmental standards, which had protections under EU law, at risk. However, Mr Davis has stressed this is not the aim, saying: "To those who are trying to frighten British workers, saying, ‘When we leave, employment rights will be eroded,’ I say firmly and unequivocally, ‘no they won’t’.”
Could it be blocked?
Scotland's Brexit minister has suggested Holyrood could vote against the bill.
Mike Russell said legislation to transpose all EU law applying to the UK into domestic law would require the consent of the Scottish Parliament, where the majority of MSPs are against it.
Mr Russell said: "A piece of legislation such as Theresa May is now promising, this Great Repeal Act, will require the approval of the Scottish Parliament. A legislative consent motion will be required.
"The Scottish Government, the Scottish Parliament, has a formal role there. We need to make sure that we are in there discussing these matters.
"Presently there is a majority against that repeal Bill, that is absolutely obvious."
While the bill will most likely be passed through the conservative majority House of Commons, it may face tougher opposition at the House of Lords.Reuse content