Economy

Challenges mount for Boris Johnson amid minister's signal on no-confidence vote

Challenges mount for Boris Johnson amid minister's signal on no-confidence vote

The amendment to the Northern Ireland (Executive Formation) Bill means that if Parliament is suspended when the United Kingdom government publishes reports on the situation in the Northern Irish assembly, MPs must be recalled to debate them.

Their rights to live, work and study are protected under an agreement struck between the two sides - but the divorce agreement has been rejected by Britain's Parliament, raising the prospect of a no-deal Brexit.

Though a vote by lawmakers on Thursday makes it harder for Britain's next prime minister to try to force a no-deal Brexit, market watchers have steadily increased the probability of such an outcome this week.

The U.K.is due to leave the bloc on October 31, and both men vying to take over as prime minister next week, Boris Johnson and Jeremy Hunt, say it's imperative that Brexit happens, with or without a deal.

A no-deal Brexit - something the two contenders seeking to be Britain's next prime minister say they are prepared to do if necessary - could add 30 billion pounds (nearly $49 billion Cdn) a year to public borrowing by the 2020/21 financial year, the OBR said.

MPs backed a proposal by Mr Grieve calling for fortnightly reports from the Government on the efforts to restore the power-sharing executive. This is not expected to happen, however.

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Britain is due to leave the European Union on October 31, but Parliament has rejected the government's divorce deal with the bloc. Critics say this would undermine global growth, buffet financial markets and weaken London's position as the pre-eminent worldwide financial center. Eurosceptic Brexiteers assert that the economy slowed by less than feared after the 2016 Brexit referendum, and that such forecasts are simply scaremongering.

The fact that the bill passed the commons with a majority of 41 and led to abstentions by some government ministers (normally required to actively support the government's position) will also concentrate minds in the new administration when Hunt or (more probably) Johnson is announced as Conservative Party leader and PM by the end of next week.

Opponents of a no-deal Brexit say it would be a disaster for Britain and many lawmakers say their duty would be to prevent any leader from triggering such a course.

In total, 17 Conservatives voted against the government, despite a three-line whip - essentially the strongest possible insistence from the leadership to toe the party line - indicating both the May administration's lack of authority now and the strength of feeling against "no-deal" on Tory benches.

Business minister Greg Clark and worldwide development minister Rory Stewart both abstained on the vote, but do not plan to resign, their aides said. 'She is obviously disappointed that a number of ministers failed to vote in this afternoon's division, ' her spokesman said.

But he said he would be "very happy" to serve in Mr Johnson's government if the former foreign secretary pursues a deal.