• The government says it will propose an “innovative and untested approach” to customs checks as part of its Brexit negotiations. The model, one of two being put forward in a newly-published paper, would mean no customs checks at UK-EU borders. The UK’s alternative proposal – a more efficient system of border checks – would involve “an increase in administration”, it admits. A key EU figure said the idea of “invisible borders” was a “fantasy”. On Twitter, Guy Verhofstadt, the European Parliament’s negotiator, added that other issues had to be agreed before negotiations on trade could begin – views echoed by the EU’s overall chief negotiator, Michel Barnier. The UK’s proposals, detailed in what it calls a “future partnership paper”, also include the possibility of a “temporary customs union” after the UK leaves the EU in March 2019 to avoid a “cliff-edge” for business as they adapt to the new arrangements. (BBC)
  • Britain may have to pay the EU to participate in a temporary customs union after leaving the bloc, the Brexit secretary has suggested. In a round of broadcast interviews, David Davis confirmed the government would use a position paper published on Tuesday to propose for a “shortish” period a deal allowing the transit of goods across borders to continue under a temporary customs union. Such an arrangement would be in the common interests of the UK and Europe, he said. “We sell them about €230bn of goods and services a year. They sell us €290bn,” Davis told ITV’s Good Morning Britain. But asked whether the UK would have to pay to stay in the customs union, he said: “What happens in that sort of interim period you will have to leave me to negotiate, I’m afraid. But the aim is to bring to an end these £10bn-a-year payments. (Guardian)
  • Many rail fares will rise by 3.6 per cent from January 2018, as a result of the high rate of inflation in July this year – which has been attributed to the EU referendum vote leading to a slump in the value of the pound. July’s Retail Price Index (RPI) is the measure by which train operators are allowed to increase “regulated” fares. Broadly, these are standard class weekly season tickets in England and Wales, most commuter fares in and around London, and off-peak returns. The inflation figure means a weekly season ticket from Brighton to London will rise by £3.80 from £104.60 to £108.40. An off-peak return between Manchester and Birmingham will go up by £1.30 from £37.10 to £38.40. An annual season ticket from Winchester to London will top £5,000 for the first time, going from £4,952 to £5,130 – an increase of £178. (Independent)