Sterling slips after Barnier's Brexit border comments

Sterling slips after Barnier's Brexit border comments

Sterling slips after Barnier's Brexit border comments

"The latest we can have the agreement fully agreed is October".

If the future trade agreement finds it impossible to provide for a frictionless invisible border, then, "specific (technological) solutions" will apply to Northern Ireland. What is feasible with a territory the size of Northern Ireland is not necessarily feasible with the whole UK.

If backed by a majority of MPs, the proposed amendment would commit the Government to holding a vote before the formal date of Brexit on March 29 2019, with the UK's withdrawal automatically halted if voters reject Mrs May's plan. She also pledged to "explore workable solutions on the Ireland question".

Brussels has said there needs to be progress on a solution by the June 28-29 European Union summit to prevent the return of border checks between European Union member Ireland and the British province of Northern Ireland.

May's ministers are split on what kind of customs deal Britain should seek from the European Union ahead of a summit of the bloc's leaders which will try to make progress on the stalemated Brexit negotiations this month.

It followed speculation he was ready to quit the government over the details of the backstop Northern Ireland border proposal.


Britain's government has removed a legislative proposal for a "meaningful vote" in parliament on whatever deal it negotiates to leave the European Union, opposition lawmakers said on Thursday.

The prime minister appeared to have avoided a full-blown Brexit crisis and an explosive cabinet resignation after a "constructive" discussion with Brexit secretary David Davis on Thursday morning. "We need regulatory alignment to avoid a hard border".

In a letter to Tory MPs, obtained by The Times, the Prime Minister described the United Kingdom proposal as "unpalatable but at worst temporary" and "in no way the Government's intended or desired" result.

The move was heralded by some as a significant shift by the Labour leadership towards a softer Brexit position, though several pro-EU Labour MPs said it would throw away the potential to defeat the government on the EEA amendment.

"The UK expects the future arrangement to be in place by the end of December 2021 at the latest" - a year after the end of the post-Brexit transition period. Notwithstanding the actual feasibility of this deadline, the ambiguity of that formulation raises two possible scenarios.

Instead it would see Britain staying tied to the EU's customs union for up to another year after an nearly two-year transition period if there were any delay in implementing a Brexit deal. Members of the customs union can not negotiate their own trade deals with non-members, meaning that leaving the EU heralds the biggest shake-up in British trade for decades.

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