A leaked statement seen by the UK’s The Guardian newspaper has suggested a political declaration to be announced by the UK and the EU on Sunday (25 November) will fail to offer frictionless trade.
The newspaper said the leaked 26-page political declaration, to be approved by EU leaders at a Brexit summit this weekend, paints a picture of the future relationship that differs from the proposals made by UK Prime Minister Theresa May at Chequers, her country residence, in the summer.
It reported that, according to the declaration, the two sides “envisage having a trading relationship on goods that is as close as possible”, but the EU and the UK would be separate markets with inevitable barriers to trade.
However, May said today (22 November) the agreement “delivers on the vote of the referendum”, and has urged UK MPs to support it.
She said: “The negotiations are now at a critical moment and all our efforts must be focused on working with our European partners to bring this process to a final conclusion in the interests of all our people.
“The British people want Brexit to be settled, they want a good deal that sets us on a course for a brighter future, and they want us to come together as a country and to move on to focus on the big issues at home, like our NHS.
“The deal that will enable us to do this is now within our grasp. In these crucial 72 hours ahead, I will do everything possible to deliver it for the British people.”
However opposition Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn described the agreement as “26 pages of waffle” that “could have been written two years ago”.