Today I asked Leader of the House Andrea Leadsom when the government will bring the Immigration Bill before Parliament. If this gives you a sense of deja-vu, this is because it is the SIXTH time I have asked her this over the last few months, and every time I receive a similar non-answer.
For example, on 6 September she told me the government were waiting for the publication of the Migration Advisory Committee Report. This was published almost three months ago – and still no sign of the Bill.
Meanwhile, time is running out before we supposedly leave the EU in March. And if we don’t replace EU legislation with new laws, including a new Immigration Bill, it could be disastrous for businesses across the country.
For example, Bristol’s artists, performers and sportspeople need a reciprocal arrangement which allows them to continue to tour in the EU in the future. But for that to happen, the UK needs to set out what it is planning to do.
This would also affect EU performers hoping to tour the UK. Many bands organising a European tour leave out Switzerland, because of the hassle of additional bureaucracy. We would all lose out if the same became true for the UK.