The @BorisJohnson statement on the #UKinternalmarketbill will not reassure anyone in Brussels I suspect - the PM recognises the Arbritration function of WA and the power of Article 16 of the protocol - but STILL wants a comprehensive 'opt out' given under Section 45 of the bill/1 Image
@BorisJohnson So it seems we're still in a position where we're prepared to use the mechanisms available, but only if we have the nuclear option in our back pocket./2

@BorisJohnson If this 'blockade materialised, it is clear that Article 16 is sufficient - indeed it sets the bar only on "diversion of trade"...the entire argument about the need to have a redress mechanism that obviates the mechanisms acknowledged, seems self-evidently confected /3
@BorisJohnson Given that's the case, the EU side will still be asking itself what is the logical inference of this move by the British government. And I suspect it will not like the conclusion it draws.

It's not too late to move, but as Cox et al understand, this is a very dangerous course4/4

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More from @pmdfoster

21 Oct
NEW: If you had asked me, before it happened, whether a Global pandemic would bring the UK together, or divide us, I would have said "unite us".

But that isn't what happened. Here is what did happen via @ft -
how #COVID19 strained the Union 1/…
@FT I cannot think of a story in my 25 years as a journalist that has so foregrounded the realities of devolution - not least because #COVID19 as a *health* crisis meant that Scottish, Welsh and NI govts did have a lot of control. /2
@FT So when it came to decisions on quarantine from abroad, test and trace and locking/unlocking, time and again Westminster was confronted by the limits of its power/2
Read 12 tweets
21 Oct
🚨🇪🇺🇬🇧🌭🍗🥩🍖🇪🇺🇬🇧🚨British sausage makers face EU freeze after Brexit - my latest via @FT with ⁦@JudithREvans⁩ ...a tale that illustrates how many odds and sods need tying up. Stay with me! 1/thread
@FT @JudithREvans So first the issue itself, and then the question: is it really a big deal? Can't it be, won't it be fixed?

The issue: on current EU 'export health certificates' there is basically no 'box' to tick that allows meat 'preparations' (sausages, mince etc) to be sent in chilled form/2
@FT @JudithREvans So here is a specimen certificate for beef products put out by @DefraGovUK'll see mince must be frozen. Which is a problem if a) your client wants it chilled b) doesn't have facilities to defrost c) wants premium product /3…
Read 13 tweets
20 Oct
As 'no deal' risk rises, why is business not getting more ready for new #Brexit borders? Well, its #COVID19, plus rubbish govt comms, plus assumption that some 11th hour fix will happen - again. My latest with @DanielThomasLDN…
@DanielThomasLDN First #Covid_19 As @BCCAdam tells us, business is just too busy fighting the "five alarm fire" of coronavirus to have the time, money and general bandwidth to start damping down for a fire that isn't yet actually lapping at the door /2
@DanielThomasLDN @BCCAdam Or as Craig Beaumont, of the Federation for Small Businesses @fsb_policy puts it even more bluntly many businesses are focusing on “surviving to Christmas” rather than what happens on January 1. /3
Read 19 tweets
16 Oct
End of a long week in #Brexit world. But next week, after this week's chest-beating will be key.

Can this move now? Or is it stuck? It's not about fish, ultimately, it's about LPF/Governance and what 'strings' the UK can accept in exchange for a 'zero/zero' FTA. /1
So @BorisJohnson say he "only wants Canada-style" deal, but actually CETA took years to negotiate because it was a line-by-line deal, with tariffs and quotas that opens a can of worms on competing EU27 interest. The UK actually wants a quick n dirty zero/zero deal. So.../2
@BorisJohnson By opting not to extend #Brexit transition period, that "real" Canada-like FTA is off the table.

The squeeze is on and while the EU will move on fish, it will ultimately only do a deal with the "commensurate" (see Political Declaration) levels of LPF. And there lies the row. /3
Read 8 tweets
15 Oct
Right. We are getting to the twitchy bit now. Who will fold first as the #Brexit crucible intensifies?

The EU side appears to bet that Boris Johnson will. But are they right?

Latest @FT #Brexit briefing is out 1/thread…
@FT First the status update. Another weeks of incremental nothingburger talks. Another call between @BorisJohnson and @vonderleyen with both sides expressing "disappointment" that not enough moves made on fish/LPF/governance to get the deal Mr Johnson wanted by #EUCO. /2
@FT @BorisJohnson @vonderleyen EU leaders have met and basically shrugged - original instruction to @MichelBarnier to "intensify" talks diluted to "continue" and clear that up to UK to "make the necessary moves" to get a deal.

Well guess what? The UK say the same. So what now??? /3
Read 20 tweets
13 Oct
NEW: Where EU chemicals Assoc boss Marco Mensink @MMens and UK's Assoc Simon Marsh @See_Chem_Bus warn of coming "double whammy" to chemicals industry from #Brexit and new EU rules - now accepting deal will be v thin. via @ft w @Michael_Pooler
@MMens @See_Chem_Bus @FT @Michael_Pooler Both bosses now seem to accept that a data-sharing deal to enable UK to build parallel REACH chemicals database won't happen - but still want decent Annex in FTA on chemicals to try and mitigate damage - details on dual registration regime here/2

@MMens @See_Chem_Bus @FT @Michael_Pooler The immediate issue is that UK companies will need a EU "only representative" for trade in EU (not clear that high % yet done this) which is worrying @MMens and others.../3
Read 6 tweets

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