Economists warn over impact of customs union Brexit – The BBC

  • A Brexit involving staying in the customs union would leave the UK £80 bn worse off a year than if it had remained in the EU, a report says.
  • The National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR) said tax income would fall by £13 bn a year.
  • The NIESR study compared what would happen to the UK economy if it stayed in a customs union but left the single market, compared to if the UK remained an EU member.
  • It predicted long-term economic growth in both scenarios, but said GDP growth would be 3.1% lower a decade after exit from the EU. NIESR said remaining in a customs union would not offset the negative impact of trade frictions the UK would face outside the single market, particularly on the service sector.
  • Labour plans to remain in a permanent customs union with the EU after Brexit, a demand it has been making in cross-party talks with the government. The party says this is the only way to keep trade flowing freely and protect jobs, and help avoid the need for a hard border in Northern Ireland.

Gauke: Brexit deal will return as soon as possible – The BBC

  • A vote on the prime minister’s Brexit deal should take place “as soon as possible”, says Justice Secretary David Gauke.
  • Commenting on the prime minister’s future, Mr Gauke said: “It would be a mistake to have a change of leadership at this point…Her going doesn’t change the parliamentary arithmetic.”
  • Theresa May has come under pressure to announce the date at which she will step down as prime minister and leader of the Conservative Party.

UK’s Brexit minister accuses EU politicians of ‘lazy thinking’- FT

  • The UK Brexit minister, Stephen Barclay, has accused Europe’s politicians of “lazy thinking”, saying the EU should see Britain’s departure as an opportunity to build a new relationship rather than as “something to be punished”.
  • Mr Barclay was speaking as EU leaders gather in Sibiu on Thursday for a Brexit-free summit to discuss the bloc’s strategic priorities for the coming years.
  • Mr Barclay said that there was a misreading in Europe of people’s motivations in the UK’s 2016 referendum on EU membership, saying that voters had not embraced the vision of Brexit party leader Nigel Farage.
  • He said that the referendum had been a vote for “confidence, optimism, a desire to be more global. It certainly was not the Nigel Farage Little Englander portrayal.”

Brexit: Corbyn says new referendum could be ‘healing process’ at European election campaign launch – The Independent

  • A second referendum could be a “healing process” bringing the Brexit process to a conclusion, Jeremy Corbyn has claimed as he launched Labour’s manifesto for the European election.
  • The Labour leader’s remarks follow months of considerable pressure from both pro-EU Labour MPs and members for the party to unequivocally support a Final Say vote on any Brexit deal. .
  • Addressing the issue during his speech in Medway, Kent, Mr Corbyn said: “Over 17 million people voted to leave the European Union. As democratic socialists, we cannot ignore that.”
  • But referring to the option, Mr Corbyn later provided a warmer response to the route of a public vote, telling the audience: “I would want that to be seen as a healing process bringing this whole process to a conclusion.”