Theresa May stakes all on Chequers 2.0: Several news stories have analysed what the new Chequers plan may entail:
- The government appears to be ditching the fiendishly complex Facilitated Customs Approach (the idea of charging different tariffs for those goods moving into the EU and those staying in the UK — and tracking them electronically). Instead, it appears that the UK plans to have the same external tariffs as the EU and be bound by its trade policy for many years hence, until a mutually acceptable technological solution to the Irish border issue can be found.
- Second (as George Parker reports), in order to maintain the invisible Irish border, Britain will accept that goods entering Northern Ireland from Britain must meet EU standards, with the potential for checks in the Irish Sea.
- It looks as though the UK will strengthen its commitment to the single market’s level playing field. This will see the UK extending the scope of the Chequers plan to cover more goods and more of the inputs that affect manufacturing costs.(FT)
EU regulators draft market agreements with UK’s FCA: Steven Maijoor, chairman of Esma, the pan-European regulator, on Wednesday said talks had begun about creating a series of “memorandums of understanding” that could be signed with the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority.The agreements would likely cover information and surveillance-sharing, and be ready in the case of a no-deal Brexit. They are “essential” for effective market supervision, he told a conference in Athens. (FT)
Theresa May says Brexit deal ‘cannot carve off NI’: Prime Minister Theresa May has repeated her pledge that she will never accept a Brexit deal which carves Northern Ireland away from the rest of the UK. She said current EU proposals would effectively leave NI in the Custom’s Union, unlike other parts of the UK. (BBC)
Theresa May links her Brexit plan to end of austerity in UK:
- Theresa May has urged her fractious Conservatives to unite at a “pivotal moment” in the UK’s history, claiming that a good Brexit deal and an end to austerity were within grasp in 2019 if the party stuck together.
- As a foretaste of her intention to loosen public spending controls, the prime minister announced that local authorities would be able to borrow billions of pounds more for housebuilding. She said that housing was “the biggest domestic policy challenge of our generation”, but added that councils were being held back from building properties by fiscal rules.
- Chancellor Philip Hammond will conduct a public spending review next year and has suggested that he would have money to spend from a “deal dividend”, if Mrs May secured a Brexit agreement based on her Chequers plan. (FT)