Queen's Speech: Britain's PM May Promises to Listen Harder on Brexit

Britain's Queen Elizabeth stirred up social media on Wednesday when she opened parliament in a hat looking very much like a European Union flag.

The Queen's Speech also includes a Nuclear Safeguards Bill to meet global standards as the United Kingdom leaves the EU's Euratom nuclear body, and an worldwide Sanctions Bill to ensure Britain complies with worldwide law.

The speech is being delivered with less pageantry than normal a result of the timing of the snap election.

But flagship manifesto policies which find no place in the Conservative agenda included the scrapping of universal free school lunches, means-testing of the winter fuel payment, an energy price cap and the reform of social care funding which opponents branded a "dementia tax".

The government set out details of this "Great Repeal Bill" in March.

New pensions minister Guy Opperman has been given responsibility for the introduction of the single financial guidance body.

Meanwhile, there is also a fisheries bill to take control of Britain's waters and a plan to give farmers support as they lose subsidies when the United Kingdom leaves the Commons Agriculture Policy.

In a ceremonial address to lawmakers, Queen Elizabeth II laid out the new minority Conservative government's policy agenda for the next two years, but the address lacked many elements of the party's controversial election manifesto.

Suspicions that the demands of Brexit and the lack of an overall majority have forced the Government to cut back on its activities in other areas are amplified by the fact that eight of the bills are specifically targeted at delivering European Union withdrawal and several of the others cover only relatively minor reforms.

Bills on trade and customs will be introduced - Brexit means Britain will try to strike new deals with the European Union but also with other nations that it was unable to negotiate with while an European Union member.

Although the British monarch concluded her address by looking forward to a state visit by Spain's monarch in July - a traditional feature of a Queen's Speech - there was no reference to the US leader.

The U.K. will "review its counterterrorism strategy" and "tackle the threat of terrorism at source" in Iraq and Syria, the country's head of state told parliament in a high-profile speech on Wednesday. She also said there'll a wide consensus on how Brexit goes ahead.

Downing Street said the Queens Speech did not make a reference to the visit announced earlier this year as no date has been set for it so far.

"Companies now have certainty that they will have to comply with tougher rules, and this gives them the incentive, and need to get their GDPR programme right".

However, the fact that this programme is due to cover two years, rather than the usual one, can not help but give the impression of a relatively lightweight package.

  • Zachary Reyes