The Government will renew its contact with UK Ministers, MPs and politicians from across the political spectrum as the UK party conference season opens this weekend. This year this takes place against the fluid background of the continuing debate about the proposed departure of the United Kingdom and Gibraltar from the European Union.
This makes it all the more important to put across Gibraltar’s point of view. The Chief Minister Fabian Picardo and the Deputy Chief Minister Dr Joseph Garcia, supported by other Ministers as necessary, will alternate between the different conferences. There will be a Gibraltar stand and a Gibraltar Government reception at every event.
This weekend the Deputy Chief Minister Dr Joseph Garcia leaves for the Liberal Democrat party conference in Bournemouth. He will address a meeting specifically about Brexit. This will be on the theme of “Brexit today – Update from Gibraltar, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.” The panel will include Tom Brake MP, the Liberal Democrat Shadow Brexit spokesman who has visited Gibraltar a number of times, the Leader of the Welsh Liberal Democrats Jane Dodds, Member of the Scottish Parliament Alex Cole and Lord Alderdice from the Alliance Party of Northern Ireland. In this way, Gibraltar is at the centre of the debate along with the devolved parts of the United Kingdom.
The Chief Minister will attend the Labour Party conference which takes place in Brighton from 21-25 September and the Conservative Party conference in Manchester from 29 September to 2 October.
The Deputy Chief Minister will represent the Government at the Scottish National Party conference in Aberdeen from 13-15 October and the Democratic Unionist Party conference on 25-26 November.
In addition to the ministerial presence, Gibraltar will maintain a high profile at all these events, with a team from Gibraltar House in London headed by the UK Representative Dominique Searle.