UK Needs Transition Period To Exit EU

Cheryl Sanders
August 13, 2017

After weeks of cabinet infighting and damaging headlines, Hammond - accused by Brexit hardliners of trying to water down attempts to break free of the European Union after Brexit - and hard Brexit advocate Fox appeared to have reconciled their differences in a joint article for the Sunday Telegraph.

Over the coming 10 days, a number of Government papers will be published spelling out the UK's Brexit blueprint on key issues including the customs union, the Irish border, fisheries and agriculture.

Chancellor Philip Hammond and the International Trade Secretary Liam Fox have jointly made the suggestion in the Sunday Telegraph newspaper.

"That is why we believe a time-limited interim period will be important to further our national interest and give business greater certainty - but it can not be indefinite; it can not be a back door to staying in the EU", Mr Hammond and Mr Fox wrote.


But in a joint article for the Sunday Telegraph, they agreed that any transition would be "time limited" and that Brexit would mean the United Kingdom pulling out of both the EU single market and the customs union.

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.

British ministers are to publish a new series of detailed papers setting out their aims for the Brexit talks amid criticism about a lack of clarity on the government's negotiating position. That means businesses need to have confidence that there will not be a cliff-edge when we leave the European Union in just over 20 months' time.

"We've been crystal clear that issues around our withdrawal and our future partnership are inextricably linked, and the negotiations so far have reinforced that view", a source in Britain's Brexit department said.


Free movement for Irish citizens in and out of Britain is expected to continue after Brexit, with the establishment of a Schengen-style area between Ireland and Britain created to resolve the border problem.

The Department for Exiting the European Union said on Sunday that it would release the first set of position papers this week, more than a year after Britons voted in a referendum to leave the European Union.

Brexit Minister David Davis (L) and EU Chief Negotiator in charge of Brexit negotiations Michel Barnier seen at a press conference at the EU Commission Headquarters in Brussels, on July 20, 2017.

Prime Minister Theresa May formally triggered the Brexit process on March 29 and divorce negotiations officially began on June 19.


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