Thursday, 13 December, 2018

Financial Times reports: UK PM Theresa May says Brexit deal is close

Boris Johnson says 'now is the time to chuck Chequers' Image Boris Johnson said the backstop was 'far from take back control'
Jean Garcia | 12 October, 2018, 19:12

A negotiated Brexit, and Theresa May's survival, hinge on whether her ministers and MPs can live with this paradox.

It was reported, however, that a number of ministers, including Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt, Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab, Environment Secretary Michael Gove and International Trade Secretary Liam Fox, raised concerns during a meeting lasting around an hour and a half.

A particular source of contention is what the "backstop", the fallback option for border arrangements in the event the two sides can not reach an agreement by the end of the transition period, will look like.

In a statement, Ms Foster, whose party props up the government at Westminster, said the European Union plan would effectively mean imposing a trade barrier between Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK.

Trade secretary Liam Fox told friends that her proposal "would make life very hard for me", according to a Mail report, because it would limit the UK's ability to strike new free trade deals outside the EU.

Esther McVey has declined to back Theresa May's Brexit plans, saying she did not want to add to "speculation".

Real Madrid losing patience with Gareth Bale for two reasons
With Alcacer in such fine form it is no wonder Dortmund are reportedly ready to convert his loan from Barcelona into a permanent deal.

This, however, would raise the prospect of increased regulation checks between Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK.

She repeated that Britain wanted a new trade deal by the end of December 2021 at the latest. Many Cabinet ministers last night warned May that the plan simply would not pass through the Commons if it did not contain a time-limited provision because it would look like the United Kingdom had agreed to an endless customs union with Europe, the BBC reported.

The Irish backstop measure, created to ensure no new border emerges between Ireland and Northern Ireland, is supposed to be temporary until a UK-EU trade deal can be agreed, and Theresa May pledged earlier this year that the arrangement would expire "at the very latest by the end of December 2021".

Downing Street also announced a further 29 no-deal notices would be published on Friday afternoon, setting out what businesses and consumers should do in the event of there being no agreement by 29 March 2019. No 10 made clear if the DUP voted down the Budget, Mrs May would not quit.

As May prepared to update key Cabinet ministers on progress toward a deal, Ivan Rogers said that, more than two years after voting to leave the EU, Britain is "on fantasy island" about what kind of divorce agreement is possible.

"If people are sitting in cabinet they either support the government's policy or they don't sit in cabinet", Sir John said.

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