On Monday (6th February 2017) Mike Gapes MP (Labour/Co-operative, Ilford South) intervened in the Parliamentary oversight of negotiations debate.
Mike Gapes (Labour, Ilford South): Will the right hon. Gentleman confirm that Norway is not in the European Union, that Norway was cited by leading leave campaigners as an option that we could follow and that we could be like Norway and not within the European Union?
Mark Harper (Conservative, Forest of Dean): I can confirm to the House that Norway is not a member of the European Union. That is indeed true. Part of the reason why I was on the remain side of the argument was that the Norway deal is not very good at all and not a model to be followed. My view was that—[Interruption.]
Heidi Alexander (Labour, Lewisham East): Will the right hon. Gentleman give way?
Mark Harper (Conservative, Forest of Dean): Let me finish answering the point of the hon. Member for Ilford South and then I will of course take an intervention. I did promise to give way to my hon. Friend Julian Knight first, but I will then give way to the hon. Lady.
The two best options are either to be in the EU and accept everything that comes with that, but with the ability to shape the rules, or to leave and not be in the single market, not have free movement of people and not be subject to the European Court of Justice. Norway’s EEA model is poor, because it is subject to the free movement of people, it has to accept the jurisdiction of the Court and it has no right at all to influence any of the rules. It is up to the Norwegians what model they want to adopt, but it is not one that would work for us or that I would recommend to the House.