Britain will not wait for German elections due in September 2017 before triggering Article 50 to begin the formal process of leaving the European Union, Prime Minister Theresa May has told the UK’s Sunday Times newspaper.
May also ruled out an early general election, saying it would cause “instability”, which means the country will not return to the polls until 2020.
The Prime Minister has been under pressure from EU officials, investors and members of her ruling Conservative Party to offer more detail on her plan for Britain’s exit beyond her catch phrase “Brexit means Brexit”.
Speaking on the first day of her party’s annual conference on Sunday, May will hope to put some of the criticism to rest by pledging to overturn the 1972 European Communities Act, the law which allowed the accession of Britain to the European Economic Community, which later became the European Union.
“We will introduce, in the next Queen’s speech, a Great Repeal Bill that will remove the European Communities Act from the statute book,” she told the newspaper.
Overturning the act will take legal effect once Britain formally leaves the European Union, the newspaper reported.
“This marks the first stage in the UK becoming a sovereign and independent country once again. It will return power and authority to the elected institutions of our country. It means that the authority of EU law in Britain will end,” May said.
The British leader is expected to trigger Article 50 to start formal departure, which can take up to two years to negotiate, early next year, but she has been clear she does not want to give her hand away before the talks.
Separately, her Brexit minister David Davis said in a statement that EU law would be transposed into British law on the day Britain formally left the European Union. Laws that were then deemed unnecessary would be repealed by parliament subsequently.