Hammond: “It’s Clear We Can’t Stay In Customs Union”

Today’s Times reports Philip Hammond is again scheming to keep Britain in the customs union. A senior Whitehall source tells Guido that, back before the government announced it would take Britain out of the customs union in January, Hammond met with Theresa May and David Davis and lobbied them to keep the UK inside. He was told Britain had to leave the customs union to respect the referendum result. (The ability to strike free trade deals with other nations – impossible inside the customs union – being a key aspect of Brexit.) Hammond accepted this publicly:

“The decision to leave the European Union has changed the game. It’s clear that we can’t stay in the customs union and wasting a lot of political capital arguing about that will not be fruitful.”

The customs union is a protectionist barrier to free trade with the 162 countries outside the EU. Don’t fall for the hype that it reduces trade barriers. Garlic has a 200% external tariff to protect French farmers, some US jeans face a 26% tariff, shoes face 17% tariffs to protect Italian cobblers. Some agricultural products, e.g. beef and dairy, have very substantial tariff rates, 54 dairy products alone have tariff rates of more than 75%. The customs union only liberalises internal trade within the EU.

We had this debate during the referendum – and leaving the customs union won. The Cabinet had this debate in January – and leaving the customs union won. Yesterday ministers from DexEU and DIT promised Britain would take control of trade policy – that means leaving the customs union. Cabinet agreed. Come on Phil, listen to your own advice and don’t waste time going down the Remoaner road of Hilary Benn and Chuka Umunna…




Tip offs: 0709 284 0531
team@Order-order.com

Quote of the Day

President Trump on May’s Brexit deal:

“I would say that Brexit is Brexit. … The people voted to break it up. So I would imagine that’s what they’ll do. But maybe they’ll take a different route, I’m not sure that’s what they voted for.”

Sponsors

Guidogram: Sign up

Subscribe to the most succinct 7 days a week daily email read by thousands of Westminster insiders.
Tory MP Puts Letter In to Brady Tory MP Puts Letter In to Brady
Lord Carrington Lord Carrington
Poll: May’s Deal or No Deal? Poll: May’s Deal or No Deal?
Tories Will Lose Votes if They Cross Brexit Red Lines Tories Will Lose Votes if They Cross Brexit Red Lines
Remain Used Same Spending Tactics as Leave But Far Worse Remain Used Same Spending Tactics as Leave But Far Worse
MEPs Vote to Reject Transparency MEPs Vote to Reject Transparency
Cabinet Brexiters Silent as Robbins Rubs Out Red Lines Cabinet Brexiters Silent as Robbins Rubs Out Red Lines
Cadwalladr and Collins to Share Platform at Byline Festival Cadwalladr and Collins to Share Platform at Byline Festival
$35 Billion Defence Deal #DespiteBrexit $35 Billion Defence Deal #DespiteBrexit
Fox First to Fly England Flag Fox First to Fly England Flag
Brexit Derby Day Brexit Derby Day
Brexit Drama Cast List Brexit Drama Cast List
Soubry / Broxtowe Latest Soubry / Broxtowe Latest
Riot Convicted Bastani on “Public Nuisance” Riot Convicted Bastani on “Public Nuisance”
May Considers Asking to Stay in Single Market for Goods May Considers Asking to Stay in Single Market for Goods
Smith Must Hold Firm Against Grieve Smith Must Hold Firm Against Grieve
Eurotunnel: Don’t Buy Border Scaremongering Eurotunnel: Don’t Buy Border Scaremongering
Shouty Cracker Lord Moat’s Mask Slips Shouty Cracker Lord Moat’s Mask Slips
How Dominic Cummings Cost Taxpayers £20 Billion How Dominic Cummings Cost Taxpayers £20 Billion