Brexit News for Thursday 5 October

Brexit News for Thursday 5 October
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Theresa May assures Tory faithful that she still believes that no deal is better than a bad deal

Theresa May sought to “reassure” the Tory faithful that she is still ready to crash out of the EU with no Brexit deal if necessary – and is making preparations. A pro-EU group criticised the Prime Minister when she used her conference speech to restate her willingness to walk away with no agreement, rather than a bad one. Ms May said she remained “confident we will find a deal that works for Britain and Europe too”, but also said: “I know some find the negotiations frustrating.” – Independent

  • Theresa May must recover to fight for Brexit – Telegraph (£)
  • After Boris Johnson’s barnstormer, how did Theresa May measure up? – Asa Bennett for the Telegraph (£)

> On BrexitCentral’s YouTube channel: Theresa May tells Tory conference that it is the Government’s responsibility “to prepare for every eventuality”

Boris Johnson ‘united with Cabinet’ behind Theresa May on Brexit…

Boris Johnson has used his Tory conference speech to praise Theresa May and insist the Cabinet is entirely united behind her approach to Brexit. The Foreign Secretary, whose own “red lines” on Brexit have overshadowed the Conservative Party conference and led to calls for Mrs May to sack him from her Cabinet, paid tribute to the Prime Minister. – Birmingham Post

…as he says Brexit Britain has potential to be world leader in the liberalisation of trade in services

At the Conservative Party conference, every fringe event was consumed by one burning question: how can we ensure Brexit Britain becomes a prosperous trading nation? Tuesday’s fringe event, hosted by UK Finance and the Legatum Institute, put this question to Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson. “I think it is going to be very successful,” remarked the Foreign Secretary reiterating his optimistic outlook for a Brexit Britain. He was confident that free trade agreements will come in at a steady pace, said Mr Johnson, although he admitted “they won’t be necessarily there, signed-sealed-delivered by the next election.” – PoliticsHome

Cabinet showdown ahead over Brexit deal

Cabinet ministers warned that up to five of their colleagues could resign over Brexit as they revealed that they are still in the dark over Theresa May’s plans with only three months left until trade talks are likely to start… A cabinet showdown is expected within weeks over how closely Britain should continue to mirror EU rules after Brexit, the type of permanent payments Britain is prepared to make and the trade-off between immigration and market access. David Davis, the Brexit secretary, and Mr Johnson are adamant that there will be no payments for market access. Other ministers including Philip Hammond, the chancellor, believe that this issue is up for negotiation. – The Times (£)

Two Tory MEPs back Verhofstadt vote to block Brexit trade talks

Richard Ashworth and Julie Girling broke ranks to side with Mr Verhofstadt, the European Parliament’s self-appointed Brexit negotiator, voting to declare Britain had not made “sufficient progress” to proceed to trade negotiations. Senior sources at the Conservative conference in Manchester were “livid” to hear the two MEPs had broken rank on the issue just 24 hours before the Prime Minister called for party loyalty. – Express

> On BrexitCentral: Fury as British MEPs vote against UK starting post-Brexit trade talks

Join Labour, urges former Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg

The former Liberal Democrat leader said that Brexit meant the country was “in a state of emergency” and what happened within “the two larger establishment parties” was “of the greatest importance”. He said that people should “take the plunge” and join the Labour Party in order to put pressure on Jeremy Corbyn and his MPs to use parliament to stop Britain’s exit from the European Union. If people could not stomach joining Labour, Mr Clegg said that they should join the Conservatives in order to put pressure on its MPs. – Times (£)

Irish PM doesn’t rule out seeking special Brexit arrangements

Ireland has “fall back” positions in case the U.K. and European Union fail to agree a wide-ranging free trade agreement following Brexit, the nation’s prime minister said. Irish premier Leo Varadkar told lawmakers in Dublin on Wednesday while he’s determined to secure a customs union partnership and free trade agreement or area between the EU and Britain, the government is developing contingency plans in case “if things do not work out.” – Bloomberg

Claims that Britain needs influx of EU workers to fill demand for jobs are ‘bogus’, say Migration Watch UK

Migration Watch UK, which campaigns for tighter immigration controls, said: “The need for ever-more EU workers in the UK has been greatly exaggerated.” Its chairman Lord Green of Deddington said: “The Government must insist that claims that we need an endless flow of workers from the EU to fill lower-skilled jobs are gone over with a fine-tooth comb.” The reliance of parts of the UK economy on migrant labour has come under scrutiny in the wake of the Brexit vote. – The Sun

Bank of England deputy governor pushes for EU and UK commitment to Brexit transition by Christmas

The Bank of England’s deputy governor will tonight urge UK and EU politicians to agree transitional arrangements for financial services by Christmas, as regulators push for continued close cooperation after Brexit. Sam Woods, who leads the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA), is expected to warn that firms will be forced to start putting their plans for a “cliff edge” scenario into action if there is no commitment to the transitional deal by the end of the year. – City A.M.

UK legal services ‘reign supreme’ despite Brexit

Legal services are big business. The market is worth about £29 billion and the export value is put at £3 billion. “As a stand-alone it is of very significant value,” Lord Keen says. “Beyond that, the presence of those extensive and expert legal services, particularly, but not exclusively, in the City of London, that form part of the wider offering of the city, banking, finance, investment… They are all inextricably linked and are what makes London the truly international centre it is. – Times (£)

Welsh Finance Secretary: We are deadly serious about amending Brexit bill

The Scottish and Welsh governments are “deadly serious” about the need for key Brexit legislation to be amended, the Welsh Finance Secretary has told MSPs. Mark Drakeford said the administrations “would mobilise whatever we can and work with whoever we are able to” to defeat the UK Government’s EU withdrawal bill if ministers do not agree to make changes. – Evening Express

Peter Foster: May renews Brexit walk-out threat, but Brussels does not believe her

They look across the Channel and do not see the infrastructure of for a “hard Brexit” being hurriedly constructed. They see Mrs May’s concessions in Florence and do not believe she would lead Britain “over the cliff-edge”. But as talks proceed into the “Phase 2” trade negotiations next year and it becomes clear just how flexible – or more likely inflexible – the EU is prepared to be, Mrs May can expect pressure for her to make good on that threat to rise from the Tory ranks. – Peter Foster for the Telegraph (£)

Andrew Green: Do we really need yet more EU workers?

The truth is that some employers have been doing very nicely out of workers who are prepared to work hard while putting up with low pay, poor conditions and little flexibility in their hours. Worse, some employers are being subsidised by the taxpayer to employ migrants from the EU. In the financial year 2014/2015, the working age benefit bill for EU migrants was £4.4 billion – that is £12 million per day. It could now be higher, as free movement has been fully extended to Romanians and Bulgarians. – Lord Green of Deddington for ConservativeHome

Ambrose Evans-Pritchard: EU shows its moral character backing violence in Catalonia

The violence almost certainly breaches multiple clauses of the EU’s Charter of Fundamental Rights but as I always feared would happen, the EU uses the Charter selectively, when it serves the interests of the European Project. Be that as it may, Brussels now bears a high share of responsibility for what happens next in Spain. If its iron-fist apologia for violence causes the country to spin into insurgency and counter-insurgency, the EU owns the outcome. – Ambrose Evens-Pritchard for the Telegraph (£)

Rod Liddle: The recent violence in Catalonia says it all about freedom in EU

Did you see the Spanish police laying into the peaceful Catalan voters in Barcelona? Hammering away at them with their clubs, gassing them, dragging them by the hair away from the polling stations? Almost 900 people injured. Fascism in action — we were taken straight back to the days of General Franco. The state violence on these people was carried out because the Catalans wanted a vote on independence. – The Sun

Brexit in brief

  • The EU’s four freedoms can only be preserved by transforming them – Simon Nixon for the Times (£)
  • Philip Hammond needs some of Boris Johnson’s vision and confidence on Brexit – Jack Tagholm-Child for Comment Central
  • Could a ‘zombie’ UK be the answer to Brexit transition dilemma over EU laws? – MlexMarketing
  • Macron’s bold reforms won’t fix the Eurozone’s problems – Emily Mansfield for City A.M.
  • Why young people should embrace Brexit – John Redwood for John Redwood’s Diary