Please see below for today’s update on key Brexit news items:

  • The UK economy expanded by 0.3 per cent in the second quarter of 2017, in line with consensus forecasts, and a currency range for sterling of $1.28 to $1.31 has broadly prevailed since the snap election’s announcement in the middle of April. This suggests that short term Brexit developments, such as recent suggestions that Government ministers are beginning to favour a transition deal with the EU to protect UK businesses, are failing to translate to the broader economic outlook. (Financial Times)
  • The UK has been urged to formally propose a role for itself in the EU’s foreign policy after Brexit by taking up observer status at the twice-weekly meetings of diplomats that shape the bloc’s relations with the rest of the world. This week, the former Spanish foreign affairs secretary, Ann Palacio, has echoed the idea previously suggested by Crispin Blunt and William Hague. She urged the UK to table a proposal soon, arguing that security, defence and foreign policies should be at the top of the agenda on future EU-UK relations and not “treated as bargaining chips” in talks on economics and trade. (The Guardian)
  • Senior cabinet ministers are in discussions with foreign counterparts on the challenges faced by the UK after Brexit. International Trade Secretary Liam Fox will travel from the US to meet Mexican counterparts to discuss trading relationships. Meanwhile, Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson is on a two-day tour of Australia, saying post-Brexit trade is “top of the agenda”, and Brexit Secretary David Davis will hold private talks in Germany ahead of the next round of negotiations. No deals can be done until withdrawal in March 2019 but the UK has established a series of inter-ministerial working groups in the US and Australia to discuss the way ahead. (BBC)