Daily Express article today – heck that fence must be pretty uncomfortable!
“Under the terms of the deal Mrs May agreed with the EU that the UK will automatically fall into a ‘backstop’ EU customs union should the Government fail to agree a new trading relationship with Brussels during the transition period. The transition period is currently set at 21 months, though Mrs May has hinted it could be extended. Should the UK enter a customs union with Brussels it would struggle to sign comprehensive trade deals with third parties, and will still have to obey a significant proportion of EU legislation.
Tory loyalists Sir Hugo Swire and Richard Graham have tabled the amendment, which would give MPs a vote on whether the UK joins the customs union backstop or extends the transition period if a new trading relationship with the EU can’t be agreed.
It also requires the Government to push for “further assurances from the EU that the backstop would only be a temporary arrangement”.
Should the UK enter a customs union the amendment requires the Government to make plans to exit within a year.
Nikki da Costa, formerly the Prime Minister’s director of legislative affairs, suggested Ministers could be behind the move.
He told the Daily Mail: “I know a Government amendment when I see one”.