Rebecca Evans, Minister for Housing and Regeneration
I visited the plenary session of the European Parliament in Strasbourg on 13 November in my capacity as the Welsh Government’s representative on the UK Ministerial Forum on European Negotiations. The purpose of the visit was to discuss with European Parliamentarians and others issues including the prospects for the successful conclusion to the negotiations between the UK and the EU27 on the Withdrawal Agreement and the associated Political Declaration; the process for securing the approval of the European Parliament for the Agreement; and the potential, in the event of a deal not being secured or being voted down in the House of Commons, of an extension of the Article 50 process and measures to mitigate the worst potential effects of ‘no deal’.
In the course of the visit, I met individually with three members of the European Parliament’s six member Brexit Steering Group: Elmar Brok MEP (Group of the European People’s Party), Gabriele Zimmer MEP (Confederal Group of the European United Left/Nordic Green Left) and Philippe Lamberts MEP (Group of the Greens/European Free Alliance), as well as Markus Winkler, the Deputy Secretary-General of the European Parliament, who provides support to Guy Verhofstadt MEP as Chair of the Steering Group. I also had individual meetings with Wales’ four MEPs, Derek Vaughan, Jill Evans, Kay Swinburne and Nathan Gill, and received a briefing from staff from the UK Permanent Representation to the EU.