The Press Room

16 February 2018

UK aims to keep financial rules aligned with EU after Brexit (Financial Times)
Plan for ‘mutual recognition’ of regulations would preserve City’s access to bloc.

May is a figure of fun in Merkel’s Germany (The Times)
Into this mixture of mockery, mirth and bemusement will step the British prime minister on Friday for another go at winning round the Germans to a tailor-made Brexit.

Five concerns for UK-EU defence after Brexit (Financial Times)
Theresa May seeks a special security relationship with bloc but flashpoints remain.

Brexit and European Security (Royal United Services Institute)
The UK’s vote to leave the EU was not primarily about security. But it could have serious consequences for future security cooperation between the UK and its European neighbours.

Britain’s summer of (EU) love (Politico)
Pro-EU forces unite to push MPs to reject Theresa May’s Brexit deal in parliament.

London May Lose to New York After Brexit, Bundesbank Warns (Bloomberg)
Cities in U.S. and Asia may benefit from U.K.’s EU departure – Executive Board member Wuermeling speaks in Frankfurt.

Brexit expected to lead the UK into recession within two years, investor survey says (CNBC)
56 percent of private equity executives and 57 percent of distressed debt investors said they expect a recession in the next two years.

Layoffs Arrive in Brexit Britain, and Auto Workers Are Up First (Bloomberg)
Being split off from their biggest market means the job cuts and production slowdown U.K. carmakers have imposed the past few months could be just a prelude to wholesale shutdowns.

European Doctors Are Giving Up on the U.K. (Bloomberg)
Just under 3,500 registered to work in 2017, a 26 percent drop from 2014.

Customising Brexit – A hybrid option for a UK-EU trade framework (Institute of Directors)
This report sets out the IoD’s position on what the UK should seek to replace its current customs union with the EU. We argue that the UK should pursue a new, bespoke, and partial customs union with Europe.

15 February 2018

Power-sharing talks in Northern Ireland collapse in Brexit blow (The Scotsman)
Talks to restore power-sharing in Northern Ireland have collapsed after the DUP said there was “no current prospect” of a breakthrough.

Boris Johnson sets out areas of Brexit divergence (Financial Times)
Foreign secretary makes the case for optimism but offers little clarity.

What Boris Johnson’s Brexit Speech Tells Us About U.K. Politics (Bloomberg)
Here are the key takeaways.

Boris’s Brexit vision is an answer to a non-existent problem (The Spectator)
The Foreign Secretary’s speech was stuffed with contradictions.

Brexit: EU 'removes transition punishment clause' (BBC)
EU diplomats have removed a so-called "punishment clause" from a draft text of the arrangement for the Brexit transition period, the BBC understands.

The great 'Made in Britain' delusion (Politico)
It's pointless for the UK to roll over EU trade deals if it can't prove its exports are homemade.

Business wants customs union and single market after Brexit, Ed Balls survey shows (The Times)
British businesses want to stay in the customs union and the single market after Brexit, according to a Harvard survey.

UK must boost productivity and focus on international competitiveness to weather Brexit, says IMF (Independent)
IMF said that a transition period would avoid a cliff edge and reduce uncertainty facing firms and households.

Dover could suffer '20-mile permanent traffic jam' after Brexit (The Guardian)
Maritime UK says logistics chain would be disrupted if transition deal is not agreed urgently.

Those Brexit clichés explained (The Economist)
Can you have your cake and eat it in Singapore-on-Thames? All is revealed.

14 February 2018

UK borders not ready for Brexit, warn MPs amid fears of backlogs (The Telegraph)
A report by the select committee on home affairs has raised concerns about the border force, which it says is already stretched because of “inadequate resources” and will be under more pressure because of new immigration checks for EU nationals and customs changes.

Dublin port prepares customs checks for hard Brexit (Financial Times)
Ireland assumes UK will leave EU customs union and single market.

Growing UK concern over pre-Christmas Border agreement (Irish Times)
May asks Varadkar to help her with post-Brexit EU-UK relations.

UK has ‘huge misunderstanding’ over post-Brexit customs: Senior MEP (Politico)
“All the comments that we hear from politicians in the U.K. clearly show that there is no understanding between what it means to be in the customs union … or have a ‘sort of’ customs union, or customs partnership like Turkey.”

The official date of Brexit may be closer than you think (City AM)
Reports suggest the UK is falling in with the EU's suggestion that the transition period end in December 2020.

Boris Johnson warns thwarting Brexit vote would be disastrous (The Guardian)
Speech telling remainers that vote to leave must not be betrayed branded ‘hypocritical’.

'Punishing' UK in Brexit talks would backfire on EU, France admits (The Telegraph)
The EU must not "humiliate" UK in Brexit talks as it could trigger a wave of eurosceptic anger in upcoming European elections, Emmanuel Macron's spokesman has warned.

Grandfathering EU free trade deals for the UK: a look at an actual text (tradebetablog)
After Brexit, ‘Global Britain’ will want free trade agreements with the rest of the world. But it already has some 37 agreements with over 60 countries through the EU. Rolling them over into the UK’s own agreements will not be automatic. A look at the actual text of the EU-South Korea deal shows why.

George Soros and the roots of antisemitism (The Times)
The row over the Jewish financier’s opposition to Brexit exposes the ugliness at the heart of nationalist populism.

Here’s a Tax Cut for London Bankers: Go to Europe (Wall Street Journal)
Expats who move to France, Spain, Ireland, Germany and the Netherlands would pay less tax and social security, an analysis shows.

13 February 2018

Brexit: Varadkar and May to work on plan for frictionless Irish border (The Guardian)
Leaders of Ireland and UK seek deal that does not need Northern Ireland to be in single market

Hard Brexit could cost Ireland €5.5 billion over 2 years (The Times)
A “soft” Brexit including a transition arrangement would cost less than €1.5 billion over the period, highlighting the importance to Ireland of the UK’s withdrawal talks with the EU.

Our new dedicated #Brexit website is now live! (Irish Foreign Ministry)
For all the latest information on Ireland’s role in the negotiations.

EU endgame is political unity not free trade, argues Boris Johnson (The Guardian)
The founding fathers of the European Union did not create the common market to tear down barriers to trade but to pursue a political project, Boris Johnson will argue this week, in a speech setting out what he claims is a liberal vision for Brexit.

Philip Hammond embarks on Brexit charm offensive amid fears France is deliberately stalling negotiations (The Telegraph)
The Chancellor will visit Norway and Sweden, before heading to the Netherlands tomorrow, Spain on Thursday and Portugal on Friday as he appeals directly to European leaders in a bid to make a breakthrough in negotiations.

EU Eyes Billions of Euros From CO2 Market for Post-Brexit Budget (Bloomberg)
Commission said to mull shifting some carbon auction revenue. National leaders to consider budget ideas at Feb 23 summit.

Britain’s BFF unconvinced by its post-Brexit vision (Politico)
In the US, they ‘can’t find anyone in London who really knows’ what leaving the EU will look like.

Make-or-Break 2018 Starts Out Windy: Brexit Barometer (Bloomberg)
Our monthly update on how Brexit is affecting the economy

Britain’s best Brexit bet? The Jersey option (CapX)
The Jersey option gives Britain a degree of regulatory freedom while minimising the disruption to trade

Europe speaks its own post-Brexit English (Financial Times)
‘Eurish’ offers a mix of romance and Germanic influences — and no tricky metaphors

12 February 2018

Besieged Theresa May pressed to put some Brexit meat on the cabinet table (The Sunday Times)
The PM has ordered her ministers to present themselves for an away-day meeting at the end of next week at Chequers, where the key issues are to be thrashed out once and for all.

Brexit: the impossible job? A guide to the roadblocks facing the PM (The Observer)
From customs union to the Irish border, problems are piling up for Theresa May.

EU issues Brexit ultimatum on Ireland (Politico)
The EU will prepare a draft of the U.K. withdrawal treaty that envisions Northern Ireland remaining in the customs union — essentially issuing an ultimatum that London come up with other options or accept that there is no other practical way to avoid the recreation of a border between Ireland and Northern Ireland.

Theresa May pledges to keep EU arrest warrant and Europol links (The Sunday Times)
To ‘grease the wheels’ of a trade deal, May is to vow the UK will go on backing key EU institutions despite Brexiteers’ opposition.

Key EU migrant scheme may not be ready before Brexit (The Times)
Work to register EU citizens has barely begun.

Lack of migrant workers left food rotting in UK fields last year, data reveals (The Guardian)
Brexit fears and falling pound left fruit and vegetable farms short of more than 4,000 workers, with senior MPs warning of a crisis.

British farmer moves fruit-growing to China over Brexit uncertainty (The Guardian)
Berry producer says government urgently needs to address shortfall in seasonal workers.

Barnier warns UK intransigence putting Brexit transition at risk (Financial Times)
The EU’s chief Brexit negotiator has warned the UK’s goal of securing a transition period to smooth its exit from the bloc is at risk after British negotiators fought back against key demands during three days of talks in Brussels.

EU diplomats 'concerned at Michel Barnier's negotiating stance' (Politics Home)
Michel Barnier's "aggressive" approach to negotiating the Brexit transition has reportedly caused concern among EU diplomats.

Billionaire George Soros pledges another £100,000 to 'accelerate' his fight against Brexit after criticism (The Telegraph)
Billionaire financier George Soros has pledged another £100,000 to his anti-Brexit campaign after he said that engineering a “mere reversal” of the EU referendum result is not enough.

9 February 2018

Northern Ireland will stay in single market after Brexit, EU says (The Guardian)
UK negotiators braced for major row over EU’s draft withdrawal agreement.

EU doubts 2020 Brexit vision, sees longer goodbye (Reuters)
Senior EU figures have told Reuters Britain will not be ready to make a full break from the European Union by the end of 2020 as Brexit transition plans foresee and the bloc is bracing for a much longer goodbye.

UK accuses EU of ‘refusing’ to speed up Brexit talks (Politico)
London wants more talks but says ‘this is not being reciprocated.’

David Davis criticises 'discourteous language' from the EU in transition period document (Independent)
Brexit Secretary says it was 'unwise' for the EU to publish a document outlining possible sanctions should Britain breach terms during the transition period.

Britain to world: please pretend we are not leaving EU (Financial Times)
A “technical note” prepared by the British government calls on non-EU nations to treat the UK during its post-Brexit transition period after March 2019 as if it was still covered by more than 700 treaties Brussels has struck with third countries on everything from fishing rights to data sharing.

Theresa May orders Chequers summit so warring ministers can finally reach Brexit agreement (Politics Home)
Theresa May's most senior ministers will hold an emergency summit at her country retreat in a bid to break the Brexit deadlock threatening to tear the Government apart.

No-deal Brexit would trigger wave of red tape for UK drivers and hauliers (The Guardian)
Britain would fall back on international treaties requiring new licences and registrations.

Japanese ambassador warns of Brexit ‘high stakes’ (Financial Times)
Envoy emphasises importance of profitability if companies are to remain in UK

Revealed: These 70 Tory MPs Support The Hard Brexit Group Led By Jacob Rees-Mogg (BuzzFeed)
The European Research Group has dominated the Tory debate on Brexit, but its true size and membership has been a mystery. A BuzzFeed News analysis has identified scores of MPs who back the cause.

EU memo of Barnier meeting raises questions over Jeremy Corbyn's Brexit policy (The Daily Telegraph)
Jeremy Corbyn told Michel Barnier that he was open to keeping Britain in the customs union after Brexit, a memo circulated to European nations suggests.

8 February 2018

Theresa May’s plan for ‘immediate’ break with EU after Brexit (Politico)
UK government drawing up plans to rethink trade policy and regulation of agricultural subsidies and financial services.

Ministers back removing EU citizens’ right to work in Britain after Brexit (The Times)
EU citizens would have no more right to come and work in Britain than those of any other country under plans presented to Theresa May’s Brexit war cabinet yesterday.

Irish border sharply divides UK’s Brexit cabinet (Financial Times)
Brexiters accuse Treasury of ‘scaremongering’ ahead of key meeting.

Hard Brexit would cost public finances £80bn, says secret analysis (The Guardian)
Leave-voting heartlands of north-east and West Midlands would be worst hit, report finds.

New Brexit leak of Government analysis reveals steep costs for UK industries (Sky News)
Sky News has seen the Government's own analysis of the impact of leaving the EU on every industrial sector.

Tory MP vows to challenge Theresa May's Brexit policy with vote to keep UK inside single market (Independent)
Former minister Stephen Hammond – who was branded a 'mutineer’ by pro-Brexit newspapers – announced he would table amendments to the Trade Bill.

Europe’s banking watchdog warns clock ticking on Brexit plans (Financial Times)
Banks told they need to apply for EU licences before the end of June.

British group wins right to take Brexit case to European court (The Guardian)
Britons living in EU can take case to ECJ arguing existing rights cannot be removed after Brexit.

For Corbyn, backing Brexit means ballot box disaster (InFacts)
Peter Kellner, former president of YouGov, writes an open letter to Jeremy Corbyn following a poll suggesting Labour risks losing votes at the ballot box if it’s seen to back Brexit.

George Soros ‘donates’ £400,000 to anti-Brexit campaign (Financial Times)
Financier backs the Best for Britain group founded by Gina Miller.


7 February 2018

UK won’t agree a Brexit plan this week (Politico)
Despite sustained pressure to articulate what kind of relationship Britain wants with the EU, Theresa May’s team is not ready to agree a position.

Brexit: EU to have power to punish UK at will during transition (The Guardian)
Brussels could impose sanctions if it believes law infringed, leaked document says.

Merkel reaches coalition deal with Germany’s Social Democrats (Financial Times)
Move to revive “grand coalition” snaps five-month deadlock following elections.

Border back in focus as May insists Brexit means no customs union (The Irish Times)
EU has called the British PM’s bluff on soft Brexit. Something has to give.

Ireland digs in over Brexit border question in renewed threat to talks (The Daily Telegraph)
Ireland is pushing for a settled “legal text” over the border question as early as next month in a move that threatens once again to derail the Brexit negotiations.

U.K. Plc Makes an ‘Urgent Appeal’ to Theresa May on Brexit (Bloomberg)
British Chambers of Commerce says business ambiguity must end. Letter to Prime Minister sent as cabinet meets for key talks.

How will Brexit affect the UK’s manufacturing industry? (UKTPO)
Even achievement of the (literally) incredible objective of signing FTAs with every non-EU country would not compensate for the loss of the relationship with the EU.

Government too slow to allocate skills and resources for Brexit (Commons Public Accounts Committee)
Government departments have to face up to some hard choices as they handle Brexit.

Amber Rudd says new immigration system 'likely' to be in place by the time Britain leaves EU (Politics Home)
The Home Secretary said a White Paper would appear by the end of this year, after the Migration Advisory Commission has produced its recommendations on what the future borders policy should look like.

Boris Johnson's ‘Liberal’ Brexit Speech Earmarked For Valentine’s Day (Huffpost)
Johnson had been due to make his speech on Monday, setting out his ‘red lines’ ahead of a crunch Cabinet sub-committee on Brexit this week, but rescheduled it amid fears the move would be seen as too provocative.

6 February 2018

Barnier: trade barriers ‘unavoidable’ if UK leaves single market (The Guardian)
EU chief negotiator’s warning comes as official says a ‘customs partnership’ is unrealistic.

The great Brexit credibility gap (Politico)
Brussels thinks Theresa May will back down, while London thinks Michel Barnier is refusing to listen.

FCA chief urges EU regulator pact on transition (Financial Times)
Andrew Bailey seeks memorandum of understanding to help exit from bloc.

The 37 EU rules Britain could be forced to accept during Brexit transition (The Telegraph)
Britain could be forced to accept nearly 40 EU directives during a two-year transition period after Brexit, according to a leaked Whitehall analysis.

Ireland border ‘fudge’ threatens to pull apart Brexit talks (Financial Times)
Brussels’ push for legal clarity has potential to topple fragile December compromise.

Brexit slideshow looks more like a disaster movie (Irish Times)
Task force outlines huge challenges for ‘future relationship’ talks between UK and EU.

Brexit immigration paper delay criticised by UK businesses (The Guardian)
Home Office says white paper outlining options after leaving EU will not be published until transition deal is agreed.

Draghi warns on difficulty of striking Brexit transition deal (Financial Times)
ECB chief says ‘frictions’ from Britain’s departure are inevitable.

Rise of an English Gentleman Threatens the Hardest of Brexits (Bloomberg)
He holds no ministerial post, but Jacob Rees-Mogg holds more and more sway when it comes to Europe.

Remove hard Brexiteers, ex-minister Anna Soubry tells PM (BBC)
Anna Soubry told BBC Newsnight she is willing to leave if the likes of Boris Johnson and Jacob Rees-Mogg take over.


5 February 2018

Brexit chaos shatters Theresa May’s illusion of unity (Financial Times)
As she resumes work in London on Monday after a week in which chaos — at times bordering on farce — has enveloped her Brexit policy, Mrs May is rapidly facing the crunch point where she has to finally articulate what sort of relationship Britain wants with the EU.


No 10 rules out customs union with EU amid confusion over government policy (The Guardian)

Statement comes after ministers contradict each other and reports of a challenge to Theresa May’s leadership over issue.


Customs union and Brexit: The, a, or c? (BBC)
What's in a word? Number 10 will have cheered some of their Brexit backing troops this morning by ruling out, (again), staying in the customs union. This time they have, for good measure and just to be clear, ruled out not just staying in 'the' customs union, but also remaining in 'a' customs union.


Advantage Brexiteers (Bloomberg)
The parliamentary arithmetic probably supports a divorce that maintains more ties to the EU (and the anti-Brexit crowd is getting more organized). But May knows she has to listen to the pro-Brexit hardliners.


Ministers to discuss Brexit customs arrangement (Channel 4)
No 10 has slapped down suggestions that we are staying in the Customs Union after the transition. But something is being cooked up in that area. One Cabinet Brexiteer told me: “it’s a Customs Agreement not a Customs Union.”


Secret plan to use Brexiteers Gove and Johnson in compromise to end Tory turmoil on trade talks (The Times)
Members of the war cabinet believe that a compromise could be struck by asking Brexiteers such as Boris Johnson, the foreign secretary, and Michael Gove, the environment secretary, to sign up to a time-limited extension to elements of the existing customs union.


Remainers in cabinet sanguine over UK leaving EU customs union (Financial Times)

Pro-Remain faction believes Britain will stay in existing customs arrangements for years.


Barnier says 'not a minute to lose' in Brexit talks (RTE)
EU chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier has said that there was not a minute to lose in negotiations on Britain's divorce with the European Union, ahead of talks with Brexit Secretary David Davis.


Ministers set up 'secret database to monitor Brexit preparations' (PoliticsHome)

The database contains 313 workstreams detailing the work that is being done on policies which had been built on an EU framework, such as aircraft flying after Brexit, putting nuclear safeguards in place and creating a new farm subsidy system.

A Canadian perspective on CETA +++: those pluses will come with minuses (LSE Brexit Blog)
What’s the difference between CETA, the agreement between Canada and the EU, and the CETA +++ that some Brexiters believe they can obtain? Kurt Hübner gives a Canadian perspective on the merits of CETA and explains what else Britain would be seeking from the EU. The UK, he concludes, will only get what it wants through compromise.