European Union could reject Theresa May's soft border proposals, Tanaiste says

Dr Fox added remaining in the customs union would "limit our ability to reach new trade agreements with the world's fastest-growing economies", and restrict the UK's ability to help "the world's poorest nations to trade their way out of poverty".

Theresa May reiterated her desire for Britain to leaves the EU customs union and single market on Friday but insisted a "frictionless trade" arrangement between the EU and the United Kingdom remains possible.

May said her vision for future ties to the European Union was a credible one and she was confident of reaching a good Brexit deal, in an interview broadcast on Sunday but recorded on Friday after a speech in which she had appealed for more flexibility from the bloc.

And she declined to defend Boris Johnson's comparison of the border to crossing between London congestion zones in Camden and Islington, but insisted both of them are "absolutely clear" that there will not be a hard border.

It will be very hard for May to clinch the bespoke trade deal she seeks with the European Union within the given time frame while keeping her deeply divided party on side and parliament, where she has only a narrow majority, broadly supportive.

"Given the importance of financial stability, of ensuring the City of London, we can't just take the same rules without any say in them", May said.

"So rather than having to bring two different systems closer together, the task will be to manage the relationship once we are two separate legal systems", she will say. The Confederation of British Industry lobby group said it was important to make sure alternative arrangements were put in place to prevent firms leaving London.

May in a Friday speech urged the European Union to show more flexibility in talks on a relationship after Brexit, saying Britain realised it could not get all it wanted but she believed an ambitious trade deal was still possible. "Let's see which is the best option for the future".

Alberta takes out full-page ads in BC over strained relationship
The B.C. wine boycott is over and corks are popping all over the Calgary foodie community to celebrate. Court of Appeal would even agree to render a decision", Notley said in an interview Friday.

Her comments came as sources admitted there were suspicions that the leak had originated from Downing Street or the Treasury, despite a strong denial from Barwell.

In it, she rejected as "unacceptable" proposals from Brussels to keep customs union arrangements in Northern Ireland.

However, Tánaiste Simon Coveney told BBC One's The Andrew Marr Show he was "not sure that the European Union will be able to support" the plan, as it would be anxious about protecting the integrity of the single market.

"While of course we will explore and look at all of the proposed British solutions, they are essentially a starting point in negotiations as opposed to an end point", he told the BBC's Andrew Marr show.

But Sturgeon said May could solve many of these problems by remaining inside the single market and customs union.

David Lidington, who is Theresa May's unofficial deputy, said Westminster would only get involved in devolved areas if a "pause" is needed to make UK-wide frameworks to protect the British common market and worldwide rules.

The UK Government said the legislation will allow common frameworks to be created ahead of further devolution but devolved governments say it amounts to a power grab and must be amended.

  • Megan Austin