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The British Prime Minister Theresa May last week said in a scheduled press conference that the UK was charting a course towards a clean break with the European Union. Her comments put to rest whatever speculation that remained about a volte-face. PM May’s scheduled speech was well telegraphed and was widely anticipated and comes at a time when the ongoing uncertainty led to a lot of speculation with the markets continuously talking about a hard Brexit or a soft Brexit.

“The United Kingdom is leaving the European Union, and my job is to get the right deal for Britain as we do,” May said on Tuesday last week. Interesting, the British pound jumped over 3% during her speech, led by a lot of factors but primarily boiling down to the fact that whatever Brexit deal was negotiated, it would be put to a parliamentary vote.

Some of the key themes from Theresa May’s speech on Tuesday included:

  • Leaving Europe’s single market, in return for taking back control of border and immigration laws, which Mrs. May described as the primary force behind the voters’ decision to leave the EU
  • Options for a customs union was also laid out on the table meaning that a new customs deal will be negotiated with the prime minister making it clear that there will be no preconceived position on the topic.
  • Rights for EU and British citizens. The prime minister maintained the view that the rights of the EU citizens living in Britain will be reciprocated, meaning that the EU leaders will need to give assurances about British living in the EU countries
  • Putting the Brexit deal to a vote was also one of the major points from Mrs. May’s speech where she said that the Parliament would be voting on the deal made with the EU, indicating that the decision will be inclusive of all parties involved

The prime minister also cautioned that Britain wants to remain a good friend but highlighted the fact that some member countries of the EU wanted to punish Britain in order to discourage other nations from doing the same. She warned that such a step would be “calamitous self-harm for the countries of Europe” noting that Britain would not accept such an approach.

Besides addressing Brexit, the PM also appealed for unity among Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales urging the nations to stop fighting the referendum verdict.

Following her speech, members from the Remain camp and some Liberal Democrat leaders were quite to conclude that the prime minister was leading the nation towards a hard Brexit.

Investors await UK’s Supreme Court Ruling on Tuesday

However, much before any of what Mrs. May has outlined can take place, the UK’s Supreme Court hearing this week will be the all-important first step. At the core of the matter is whether the PM needs to have the permission of the British MP’s to trigger the Brexit process.

The issue has been widely contested with the government appealing a high court ruling in November that the PM must put the Brexit deal to a parliamentary vote. 11 Supreme Court judges will be giving their ruling on whether the High Court’s decision on putting the Brexit to a parliamentary vote was right.

It is widely expected that the Supreme Court will rule in favor of the High Court, which could see some strong knee-jerk reaction in the British Pound. In anticipation of the verdict, Jeremy Corbyn said that he would urge his MP’s not to block the Brexit vote noting that the Labour party will “respect the decision of the British people.”