Wefan Gymraeg

Mark Williams responds to First Minister’s statement on invoking Article 50

Mark Williams, Leader of the Welsh Liberal Democrats, has responded to the statement by the First Minister of Wales that the UK should formally submit notification under Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty of the UK’s intention to leave the European Union at the earliest opportunity.

On the First Minister’s statement, Mark said: "While I understand the wish to ensure the minimum amount of uncertainty for people and businesses in Wales, there is real concern that invoking Article 50 immediately would work against Wales’s interests.

"Once Article 50 is invoked, there will be a limited timescale in which Wales, and the UK, will be able to negotiate any deal. With so much at stake for Wales, for our farmers, for our Universities, for our cities and our rural communities – all of which receive huge benefits from our current membership – this process should not be rushed.

"Rather than calling for the Government to invoke Article 50 as soon as possible, the Welsh Government should be using this time to press the UK Government to work out a negotiating position which will specifically protect Welsh interests as much as possible.

"All of this will take time, and while there are concerns about the current uncertainty, there could be far worse in store for Wales if the UK is rushed out of Europe while ill-prepared."

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