May Speech Key Points

The main points from Theresa May’s speech. Brexit means…

  • OUT of the single market: “I want to be clear, what I am proposing cannot mean membership of the single market”
  • OUT of the customs union in its current form: UK will either seek a new customs agreement or become an “associate member” of the customs union. UK must be able to seek new trade deals with the wider world.
  • End to contributions to EU budget: Gave herself leeway on making “an appropriate contribution” to parts of the EU budget, though made clear “the days of making vast contributions will end”.
  • Transition: There will be a “phased process of implementation” to “avoid a disruptive cliff edge”. No word on time limit.
  • Threat to EU: Makes clear she will walk away if Brussels seeks a punitive settlement: “no deal for Britain is better than a bad deal”. Repeats Hammond’s threat to make Britain the tax haven of Europe: “We would have the freedom to set competitive tax rates.”

Brexiters will be happy with that. Key battlegrounds now are what the new customs deal looks like and how long this “phased process of implementation” will take. Brexit really does mean Brexit…

Full text here.




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Quote of the Day

Dominic Raab wrote in his letter of resignation…

“This is, at its heart, a matter of public trust,” he told the PM, concluding: “I cannot reconcile the terms of the proposed deal with the promises we made to the country in our manifesto at the last election… I believe that the regulatory regime proposed for Northern Ireland presents a very real threat to the integrity of the United Kingdom. I cannot support an indefinite backstop arrangement, where the EU holds a veto over our ability to exit…”

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