Brexit News for Wednesday 11th January

Brexit News for Wednesday 11th January

Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership ‘reboot’ in disarray after major U-turn on freedom of movement

Labour’s immigration policy was in chaos on Tuesday night after Jeremy Corbyn reversed his position on free movement just hours after suggesting his party would oppose uncontrolled migration to the UK. Mr Corbyn had indicated on Monday that he was prepared to address the concerns of Labour voters by announcing that his party was “not wedded” to free movement and favoured “reasonably managed migration”. However when he delivered his speech on Tuesday the Labour leader changed a key paragraph to say that the party did not “rule out” keeping free movement in exchange for access to the Single Market. – Daily Telegraph

Labour does not rule out backing continued freedom of movement when Britain quits the European Union, Jeremy Corbyn has said… Speaking in Peterborough, Mr Corbyn said the party supports reasonable management of migration as part of the exit settlement. But he told supporters that he did not want comments on freedom of movement, which were viewed as an attempt to clarify the party’s position after months of confusion, to be “misinterpreted”. – ITV

  • Jeremy Corbyn rewrites Brexit speech following immigration backlash – Business Insider
  • I’ve not changed mind on immigration says Jeremy Corbyn – BBC
  • Jeremy Corbyn ‘distancing himself from his own leadership relaunch speech’ – ITV
  • Is Jeremy Corbyn more worried about UK or foreign workers? – Robert Peston for ITV
  • We may never find out what Corbyn’s position on Brexit is – Ian Dunt for Politics.co.uk
  • Jeremy Corbyn’s Brexit speech in full – Daily Mirror
  • Brexit shambles and a party that’s lost its way – Daily Mail editorial
  • Jeremy Corbyn’s utter failure on immigration and the economy are a huge opportunity for Theresa May – Daily Telegraph editorial

UK urged to create new ‘special defence relationship’ with EU after Brexit

The UK should embrace a new “special relationship” with the EU on foreign and security policy after Brexit, a top defence expert said on Tuesday 10th January. Professor Malcolm Chalmers, the deputy director-general of the Royal United Services Institute (Rusi) think-tank, said such a relationship could help to ensure that Britain would continue to be “closely involved in consultations on the main security policy issues of the day”. – International Business Times

  • ‘Grown-up’ Brexit talks urged by ex-EU commissioner – BBC

Boris Johnson says Trump’s team want a trade deal ‘fast’

The British foreign secretary was in the U.S. this week for talks with congressional leaders and the Trump transition team, the first such visit by a U.K. cabinet minister since the tycoon’s election win. Asked about the trip in parliament Tuesday, Johnson said there was agreement that “now is time for a free trade deal. They want to do it fast.” He added that the call for a deal was “most urgent” on the part of the incoming U.S. administration. – Politico

  • Antonia Romeo is the woman who’ll make sure British business keeps booming in the US – Daily Telegraph
  • Diplomats must continue to be frank with ministers says Boris Johnson – Yorkshire Post
  • Why Tunisian olives hold the key to the UK’s post-Brexit trading success – Andrew Murrison for City A.M.

Messaging giant Snapchat to make UK main base outside US

Snap, the owner of Snapchat, has confirmed it will make the UK its main hub outside the US. The California-based tech giant, which is reportedly preparing for a $25bn (£21bn) stock market float on Wall Street, said the UK was “a great place to build a global business”….Claire Valoti, general manager of Snap Group Limited in the UK, said: “We believe in the UK creative industries. The UK is where our advertising clients are, where more than ten million daily Snapchatters are, and where we’ve already begun to hire talent.” The announcement means that revenues from sales in the UK and in countries where Snapchat has “no local entity or salesforce” will be booked through the UK. – Sky News

FTSE 100 closes at new high in longest-ever winning streak

The FTSE 100 reached another new peak on Tuesday and broke a near 20-year record for its longest run of closing highs. The index jumped 37.70 points or 0.52% to end the day at 7,275, its ninth consecutive day of closing highs, beating the eight-day run in May 1997 following Labour’s general election landslide under Tony Blair. – The Guardian

  • Business confidence in British economy soaring since vote to Leave EU – Daily Express
  • Does Britain’s Brexit devaluation make us richer or poorer? – Jeremy Warner for the Daily Telegraph (£)
  • Spending power on the rise says ONS – BBC

MPs hear call for five-year transitional Brexit deal

The head of the London Stock Exchange (LSE) has told MPs that the UK government should negotiate a five-year transitional Brexit deal. Xavier Rolet told the Treasury Select Committee this was needed to protect the UK’s financial industry. He agreed that Brexit might see a massive migration of City employment to other EU countries, not just a few tens of thousands of jobs. He said the projected two years of Brexit negotiation was “too short”. – BBC

  • The financial industry is not happy about Brexit – but will have to make the best of it – William Wright for the Daily Telegraph

Sunder Katwala: Liberals should back an end to EU free movement

Most people want more control over the pace of migration, while recognising migration itself brings both gains and pressures to British society. The public sees the referendum vote as a chance to strike a balance. This could mean strong support for skilled migration, combined with more control over the scale of low-skilled immigration. My own organisation, British Future, has proposed a preferential migration offer to Europe, where visa-free travel could be accompanied by sector-specific job quotas. This would fit too with the calls from Cabinet ministers, such as Andrea Leadsom on agriculture and Sajid Javid on house-building, to ensure that a more controlled system does involve choosing to keep low and semi-skilled immigration that key sectors need. – Sunder Katwala for the New Statesman’s Staggers blog

John Redwood: An open letter to Tory donor Sir Andrew Cook – You can’t buy Brexit policy

As a donor to the Remain campaign and to the Conservative Party, you will know that donations do not buy influence or change of policy. Donations are made to support causes and parties the donor wants to support…It would never be right for the Conservative Party to change policy just because someone who granted it money wanted it to do so. It would be especially wrong to do so in defiance of a large vote by the UK electorate to leave the EU following a long and thorough campaign where all the arguments were fully exposed by both sides and poured over by experts. – John Redwood MP for the Yorkshire Post

Brexit in brief

  • If the EU really seeks to punish Britain with a ‘lose-lose’ Brexit it will only hasten its own destruction – Peter Foster for the Daily Telegraph (£)
  • If you want the best Brexit, reform the civil service – James Frayne for ConservativeHome
  • Of course farmers fear Brexit, but it could save the British countryside – George Monbiot for The Guardian
  • Why Italy’s Five Star Movement was rejected by EU liberals – James Crisp for the New Statesman
  • How Britain can make the most of leaving the single market – Andrew Lilico for the FT
  • Hint that Welsh Government could gain power to cut Air Passenger Duty post-Brexit – Wales Online