The UK will need a transition period to help businesses adjust after Brexit, the chancellor and the international trade secretary have said. In a joint Sunday Telegraph article, Philip Hammond and Liam Fox stressed any deal would not be indefinite or a “back door” to staying in the EU.
Their comments are being seen as an attempt to show unity between rival sides in Theresa May's cabinet. It comes as ministers start to set out their detailed aims for Brexit.
A series of papers are being published, including one this week covering what will happen to the border between Northern Ireland and the Republic after the UK has left the EU.
Writing in the Sunday Telegraph, Mr Hammond and Mr Fox said the UK definitely will leave both the customs union and the single market when it exits the EU in March 2019.
They said a time-limited transition period would further our national interest and give business greater certainty - but warned it would not stop Brexit.
We are both clear that during this period the UK will be outside the single market and outside the customs union and will be a 'third-country' not party to EU treaties, they said.
They said the UK's borders must continue to operate smoothly, that goods bought on the internet must still cross borders, and businesses must still be able to supply their customers across the EU in the weeks and months after Brexit.
The two leading politicians said the government wanted to ensure there will not be a cliff-edge when we leave the EU.
Meanwhile, former Labour Foreign Secretary David Miliband has called for politicians on all sides to unite to fight back against the worst consequences of Brexit. He described the outcome of last year's referendum as an unparalleled act of economic self-harm.
Writing in the Observer, he said: People say we must respect the referendum. We should. But democracy did not end on June 23, 2016. The referendum will be no excuse if the country is driven off a cliff.
Negotiations between Brexit Secretary David Davis and EU officials are set to resume at the end of this month.
Mr Davis said the publication of the papers outlining the government's aims for Brexit would mark an important next step towards delivering the referendum vote to leave the EU.
Commenting for this story is now closed.
If you have a Facebook account, become a fan and comment on our Facebook Page!
Who said it was devoted to America...? I take it you mean the US...Aug 15th, 2017 - 04:54 pm +1
It says South Atlantic News Agency...not North Atlantic...
I'm sure this article is in the International section under Regions...(International)...
Hope this clarifies things for you..
Will need a transition period?Aug 14th, 2017 - 12:39 pm 0
The 'transition' period started the day AFTER the Brexit vote in 2016, where the UK had 9 free months to gather itself and formulate a comprehensive plan to make the change go smoothly. Instead it chose to do nothing, except bicker amongst themselves and make grandiose delusional statements about the UK's supposed clout in the negotiations with the EU.
And so far, since March, the UK has wasted yet another half year. That is 15 months where the UK has manage to achieve absolutely nothing.
And had the UK been a proper government, they would have used the months and even years before Brexit to gain even more time and have contingency plans in case a leave vote prevailed. At least another 12 to 24 free months right there.
So at least 28 months the UK has decided to burn up.
You still have a transitional period... 18 months left in it.
Tick tok tick tok...
I already have announced that I will unilaterally lay off the British.Aug 14th, 2017 - 01:57 pm 0
- Tr0lListic_Approach, 09/08/2017 (5 days ago)
Well, that didn't last long!
Nice that they can now agree we need a transition period, but what do they mean by one if we won't be in the single market or customs union? If we're not in those we'll need some new agreement anyway, why not go straight to the final deal?
And why didn't the ministers publish their papers setting out detailed aims for Brexit before it was triggered? What were they doing for all those months?