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Theresa May cautions UK that the alternative to Brexit is “no deal”

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Theresa May cautions UK that the alternative to Brexit is “no deal”


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The Eurochannel was an engineering marvel that connected the UK with the European continent via the English channel. This game-changing undersea rail link helped maintain frictionless, just-in-time trade and manufacturing between the UK and the rest of Europe.

But the imminent departure of Britain from the European Union is just six months away; it could undercut the transit network, disrupting business and trade. The $20 trillion European economy is built on open borders for delivering fresh English lamb to butchers in Milan or German disc brakes to BMW in Oxford — not in days, but hours.

But there is no full exit agreement, which resulted in threats from May’s conservative party to vote down a deal. “I think that the alternative to that will be having no deal,” May told BBC TV.

Her Brexit blueprint includes some key features. One is a new free trade area in goods, based on a ‘common rulebook’ of EU regulations necessary.

Then there are ‘mobility’ rules which will end automatic freedom of movement, but still allow UK and EU citizens to travel without visas for tourism and temporary work. Another is continued UK participation in and funding of European agencies covering areas like chemicals, aviation safety and medicines.

May also planned a ‘facilitated customs arrangement’, removing the need for customs checks at UK-EU ports. And finally, continued cooperation on energy and transport, continued use of EHIC health insurance card, and separate banking and legal rulebooks.

But the implications of the mentioned plans are uncertain. Companies like Cadbury have prepared for Brexit by stockpiling inventory to prepare for slow trade initially, owing to security checks.

The Times newspaper reported that the EU’s chief negotiator, Michel Barnier, is working on a new protocol text outlining how to use technology to minimize checks on the border.

Under the EU plan, goods could be tracked using barcodes on shipping containers under “trusted-trader” schemes administered by registered companies, the Times reported. Reuters reported on Sept. 12 that EU officials were working on a sensitive Irish protocol to the draft Brexit treaty with Britain, as part of what Barnier has called efforts to “de-dramatize” the issue and get a deal.

The proposals are to be circulated to European governments after the Conservative Party conference which starts on Sept. 30, according to the Times. The “revised draft of the Northern Ireland protocol”, according to a diplomatic note of talks between EU ambassadors, will propose that most new checks would not happen at any border, the Times said.

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Theresa May cautions UK that the alternative to Brexit is “no deal”