Why? Because, if it worked, it's the only way to get an All-UK solution on customs, avoid a goods border in Irish Sea and preserve some independent trade policy /3
a) UK as 3rd country can't be trusted to collect tariffs for EU
b) puts burden on business
c) too expensive and hard for EU own customs machinery.
So why would they accept it now? /4
What does that mean? Good question.
Per industry source, the UKG has been testing it with some companies in NI. I don't know which. Am told they signed NDAs. /5
But even if the tech did work, it would require UK to subscribed to a lot of ECJ oversight to fix objection a) above. And maybe other intrusive elements, like EU spot checks. Could cost too. /6
The ERG do a pretty good job of demolishing the CP in their 30-page report.
It won't be ready til 2023 and will require such levels of alignment, the UK ends up in what looks very much like vassalage /8
This para almost admits as much. /9
This from JRM is simply wrong when he says border infrastructure can be avoided "with maximum facilitation" /10
The UK proposal suggested SMEs were exempt - rejected. That's 80% of trade by value. No such exemptions exist in Norway-Sweden.
Trusted traders schemes also don't fly/11
In practice, "MaxFac", even if it were to be accepted, would only obviate border in NI by putting a border in Irish Sea to (per Barnier this week) keep safe the Single Market. He was explicit on this /12
The reality is the DUP is more pro-Union than it is pro Hard Brexit.
I understand from three sources DUP has made clear to No 10 it will accept UK-wide CU membership if that's price to avoid Irish Sea border.
Their priority is UK-wide solution /13
a) the EU simply rejects the idea that even a more 'realistic' version of CP can be made to work and, even before that,
b) if Mrs May can sell it to her cabinet and face down ERG.
I defer to Westminster watchers on that. /14
But walking away doesn't work either. And the EU knows it. /END