European Union

INTERNATIONAL: MPs' vote on Brexit deal ruled out by Speaker John Bercow

The Commons Speaker has refused a government request to hold a "yes" or "no" vote on its Brexit deal.

John Bercow said a motion on the deal had already been brought before MPs on Saturday, and it would be "repetitive and disorderly" to debate it again.

Saturday's sitting saw an amended motion nodded through by MPs, which withholds approval of Boris Johnson's deal until it has been passed into law.

The PM agreed a deal with the EU last week, but it must be approved by MPs.

Tewarie tells Govt: "Pay cane farmers before they die..."

Ca­roni Cen­tral MP Dr Bhoe Tewarie made a pas­sion­ate plea for Gov­ern­ment to pay the coun­try’s age­ing cane farm­ers who he claimed are owed mil­lions of dol­lars be­fore they die one-by-one.

The mat­ter was raised at yes­ter­day’s Stand­ing Fi­nance Com­mit­tee in ex­am­in­ing the 2020 ex­pen­di­ture of the Min­istry of Plan­ning and De­vel­op­ment in Par­lia­ment.

The com­mit­tee was told that $5 mil­lion was al­lo­cat­ed in the 2019 bud­get for the farm­ers of which $1.7 mil­lion had been spent.

INTERNATIONAL: Brexit: EU and UK reach deal but DUP refuses support

A Brexit deal has been agreed between the UK and EU before a meeting of European leaders in Brussels.

Boris Johnson and Jean-Claude Juncker called it a "fair" outcome. The EU Commission President said there was no need to extend the Brexit deadline.

He said: "We have a deal so why should we have a prolongation."

This will be a boost for the PM [Boris Johnson], but he still faces a battle to get the deal through Parliament on Saturday, with the DUP opposing it.

Mr Johnson urged MPs to "come together" and "get this excellent deal over the line".

T&T now one of only 7 countries on EU tax haven blacklist

The finance ministers of the 28 European Union member states have removed two countries St Kitts and Nevis and the Bahamas from the blacklist of tax havens.

Trinidad and Tobago, however, remains one of only seven countries still blacklisted.

The communique of the Council of Finance Ministers confirmed the seven countries that remain on the blacklist: Guam, Namibia, Palau, Samoa, American Samoa, Trinidad and Tobago and the US Virgin Islands.

Internationally: Two years for Brexit to happen

Prime Minister Theresa May is to officially notify the European Union next Wednesday that the UK is leaving.

Downing Street said she would write a letter to the European Council, adding that it hoped negotiations on the terms of exit and future relations could then begin as quickly as possible.

An EU spokesman said it was "ready and waiting" for the letter.

Mrs May's spokesman also rejected reports an early election may be held, saying: "It's not going to happen."