Foresight News provides a look-ahead to the key events that need to be in your news diary for next week…
Barring any last-minute hiccups, Theresa May has finally secured an agreement with the EU over the terms of the UK’s exit from the bloc. Now she must steer the deal through a Parliament in which her support appears to be eroding rapidly.
- February 14, 2020
- February 10, 2020
- January 31, 2020
It’s tradition for the Prime Minister to make a statement to the House of Commons after meeting with European leaders, so MPs are likely to have another chance to voice concerns after defence questions conclude on Monday.
On Tuesday, there’s a crunch Cabinet meeting which may be less combative than previous weeks after no further resignations followed the departures of Dominic Raab and Esther McVey.
The moment for ministerial rebellion seems to have passed, so May should emerge from today’s meeting with the support of her Government, at the very least, now guaranteed (though of course there’s always the chance of a surprise departure).
In Brussels, the European Court of Justice hears a case referred by the Scottish courts on the revocability of Article 50. The case was brought by a group of SNP and Labour politicians who oppose Brexit and it argues that the UK can unilaterally withdraw the Article 50 notification which kick-started the Brexit process.
An application by the UK Government to have the case heard by the Supreme Court was rejected last week, which means European judges may yet have a say in the UK’s exit from the EU.
Sajid Javid appears before the Home Affairs Committee alongside permanent secretary Sir Philip Rutnam for a grilling on the work of his department.
The Home Secretary, who last week clashed with committee chair Yvette Cooper on Twitter, can expect questions on critical reports released by the Intelligence and Security Committee which found serious failings in the monitoring of Khuram Butt and Salman Abedi before the pair went on to commit terror attacks in 2017.
On Wednesday the Bank of England releases the results of this year’s stress tests of the UK’s major banks. The tests examine the banks’ ability to withstand hypothetical adverse scenarios such as dramatic falls in global and domestic GDP and stark increases to unemployment and the Bank’s interest rate.
The UK’s biggest lenders all passed the tests for the first time in 2017, though the Bank warned of the potential impact that a “disorderly Brexit” could have in combination with a global recession.
The results were initially due to be released in December, but the Bank announced earlier this month that it had brought forward publication to accommodate a request from the Treasury Committee to provide an economic analysis of the EU Withdrawal Agreement, which is due to be released on Thursday and will draw on market-sensitive material contained in the stress tests.
The analysis will feature an assessment of a “no-deal” scenario, though Governor Mark Carney, perhaps mindful of the reaction to the Bank’s previous assessments of Brexit, stressed it would not represent a judgment of any possible future relationship between the UK and the EU.
Prime Minister Theresa May joins world leaders in Argentina on Friday for the annual G20 summit. Argentina’s G20 Presidency priorities for this year are focused on the future of work, infrastructure and development, and a sustainable food future, though topics from Brexit to international trade and security will be up for discussion.
However, the meeting may be overshadowed by the ongoing fallout over the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi and the expected attendance of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (pictured).
US President Donald Trump said he would meet with bin Salman on the sidelines of the summit, days after he dismissed suggestions that the Saudi regime was behind the killing.
The International Olympic Committee’s Executive Board begins a two-day meeting in Tokyo for discussions on the 2024 and 2026 Summer and Winter Games.
The IOC remains in dispute with Russia, whose Olympic federation announced on 22 November that it would not recognise a Court of Arbitration for Sport ruling which strips bobsledder Alexander Zubkov of his 2014 Olympic gold medal for doping.
The G20 Summit continues Saturday and it may be the bilateral talks planned on the sidelines of the main event that become most newsworthy. Arguably the most anticipated is a meeting between Donald Trump and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping.
The two countries have undergone a recent cooling of relations as a result of an ongoing trade dispute, with Beijing and Washington both keenly aware of the importance of a positive meeting between the two. Trump is also expected to meet with Vladimir Putin and Theresa May.
John McDonnell is in Blackpool for the latest leg of his “Road to Rebuilding the Economy” tour. Fresh from announcing that the Labour party should be allowed to form a minority government in the event that Theresa May’s Brexit deal is defeated in the House of Commons, the Shadow Chancellor will discuss his plans to create jobs and boost wages in marginal seats.
Lineal heavyweight British champion Tyson Fury takes on American Deontay Wilder in Los Angeles in the early hours of Sunday morning (2am GMT) for the WBC Championship.
Both Fury and Wilder have thrown a flurry of verbal jabs in the build up to the fight, and IBF, WBA, and WBO champion Anthony Joshua has weighed in with an offer to fight the winner in a 2019 unification bout.
Voters head to the ballot box in Andalusia for regional elections which are seen as a bellwether for the national popularity of Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez. Spanish media have suggested that a poor performance for Sanchez’s PSOE could result in an early general election being called next year – a suggestion the PM has previously raised.
Sanchez has also been forced to bat away accusations of using the future of Gibraltar as political bait ahead of the vote in the wake of his comments on the Rock’s future after Brexit.
The news diary is provided in association with Foresight News.
Picture: Bandar Algaloud/Courtesy of Saudi Royal Court/Handout via Reuters