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Former senior official slams UK's Brexit trade plans

Former senior official slams UK's Brexit trade plans”

In a statement Thursday after her meeting with Tusk, May's office said she "hoped that European leaders would engage with this thinking constructively". "It would be a complete sell-out of Britain's national interests", he said in a speech at Bloomberg in London on Tuesday.

"So I want the broadest and deepest possible agreement - covering more sectors and co-operating more fully than any Free Trade Agreement anywhere in the world today", May will say.

According to the legal proposal, Northern Ireland will form a " common regulatory area " with the Republic of Ireland and will have to follow the EU's rules and rates on customs, sales tax, state aid, excise duties and even sanitary and phytosanitary rules.

The proposal was offered as a fall-back option if London failed to come up with a better solution to avoid new customs checks between British-ruled Northern Ireland and European Union member Ireland, where some fear a "hard border" could upset the fragile peace.

But May has repeatedly said Britain will leave in order to sign its own trade deals, and her spokesman confirmed on Monday that the government "will not be joining a customs union" after Brexit.

In a much-anticipated speech which the European Union hopes will offer details of her plan for Britain's future after Brexit, May will try to defuse a dispute over the border with Ireland that threatens to stall the Brexit talks.

"The inevitable price of trying to negotiate with one arm tied behind our back is that we would become less attractive to potential trade partners and forfeit numerous opportunities that would otherwise be available to us", he said.

Citing Turkey, which has a customs union with the EU, he will say such an agreement "would remove the bulk of incentives for other countries to enter into comprehensive free trade agreements with the United Kingdom if we were unable to alter the rules in whole sectors of our economy".

Jacob Rees-Mogg, a leading eurosceptic lawmaker in May's Conservative party, told AFP that there were "technological solutions" to avoiding a hard Irish border.

The development places May on a collision course with a number of her remain-supporting backbenchers, whose amendment to the trade bill calling for the government to pursue a customs union will now have the backing of the entire Labour party.

Mrs May suffered her first defeat on Brexit legislation in December when 11 Tory MPs teamed up with Labour to demand that Parliament is given a "meaningful" vote on any deal with Brussels. The following are the key questions she needs to answer.

Former British Prime Minister, Tony Blair, has urgedEU leaders to commit to reforms, notably on migration, to help convince Britons not to go ahead with leaving the bloc in 2019. "It's not going to happen".



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