Hammond warns EU to include finance in Brexit deal: Brexit News for Wednesday 7 March

Hammond warns EU to include finance in Brexit deal: Brexit News for Wednesday 7 March
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Philip Hammond warns EU that blocking a trade deal on financial services would result in ‘mutual harm’…

Philip Hammond will warn the EU that it will be harming its own interests if it refuses to include financial services in a Brexit deal with the UK… Mr Hammond, arguably the most Europhile member of the Cabinet, will use his speech in London to prove he believes in Brexit. He will say that: “It is time to address the sceptics who say a trade deal including financial services cannot be done because it has never been done before. To them I say, every trade deal the EU has ever done has been unique. The EU has never negotiated the same arrangement twice.” – Telegraph (£)

  • EU trade deal must include financial services, says Hammond – BBC News
  • The hidden message in Hammond’s EU speech – Kamal Ahmed for BBC News
  • Philip Hammond blasts ‘hypocrite’ Michel Barnier – The Sun

> Former Treasury Minister Mark Hoban on BrexitCentral in January: Post-Brexit free trade deals should cover services as well as goods

…although Brussels and Paris are set to rebuff Government’s Brexit hopes for City access

Theresa May’s plan to secure London’s place as Europe’s financial services capital after Brexit will suffer a serious setback on Wednesday when Brussels and Paris are to publicly rebuff her proposals to maintain the City’s access to the EU single market. Mrs May’s negotiating stance, to be fleshed out in a speech by Chancellor Philip Hammond on Wednesday, would allow UK-based institutions to continue to enjoy high levels of market access under a deal where Britain and the EU agreed a set of regulatory outcomes, even if they were achieved in different ways. – FT (£)

May ‘double cherry-picking’ on Brexit, says leaked EU report…

The EU has dismissed Theresa May’s Brexit speech as being more about Conservative party management than putting forward sensible solutions on trade, according to an internal document leaked to the Guardian. The Brussels analysis of the prime minister’s address, issued to representatives of all 27 member states, described her intervention as “a change in tone, but not in substance”, warning that all the UK’s red lines remained. And while it said the prime minister had promised clarity on Britain’s hopes for a future trading relationship, it described the model she proposed as unworkable and “double cherry-picking”. It also claimed there had been “zero progress” when it came to ideas for customs cooperation. “Like with PM May’s previous speeches, she addressed more her domestic audience, trying to bridge the gaps between the two poles of the debate on Brexit in the UK,” the paper concluded. – Guardian

  • EU claims May is ‘short on workable Brexit solutions’… – Sky News
  • European Parliament outlines its post-Brexit vision – Politico
  • Brussels believes May’s speech was more about Tory party management – Daily Mirror
  • European reactions to Theresa May’s vision for post-Brexit trade – Open Europe

…as Guy Verhofstadt says MEPs need 100% certainty on citizens’ rights

Home Office officials have been asked to convince the European Parliament the system for EU citizens in the UK will not become a “bureaucratic nightmare”. The parliament’s Brexit chief Guy Verhofstadt said he had invited the officials to Brussels, after meetings with David Davis and other ministers. Mr Verhofstadt said he wanted to ensure the rights of UK citizens in the EU as well as EU citizens in the UK. The European Parliament has a veto on any eventual UK-EU Brexit deal.Mr Verhofstadt met Brexit Secretary David Davis in 9 Downing Street, before moving to 10 Downing Street for meetings with Cabinet Office minister David Lidington and Home Secretary Amber Rudd. – BBC News

  • Verhofstadt hints EU citizens’ rights deal is close – The Sun

> Watch on BrexitCentral’s Youtube Channel: Guy Verhofstadt meets Davis and May

David Davis tells MPs: Final Brexit vote won’t overturn referendum

David Davis has told MPs they will not be able to use their vote on the final Brexit deal to thwart the results of the referendum. During a tense back-and-forth with MPs of the European Scrutiny Committee the Brexit secretary repeatedly refused to answer what would happen if parliament voted down the final deal. Eventually he said: “I don’t view a meaningful vote as overruling the referendum if that’s what you mean”. Previously Labour MPs have told City A.M. they plan to vote down the deal regardless of the result, in the hope of prompting a second referendum. – City A.M.

  • Davis says UK and EU still disagree on many aspects of transition – Independent

> Watch on BrexitCentral’s Youtube Channel: Davis says we’ll have a yearly negotiation of fishing quotas

DUP warns EU it will scupper any Brexit deal that divides Northern Ireland and Britain

Arlene Foster on Tuesday warned the European Union and Theresa May that her Democratic Unionist Party would torpedo any Brexit deal that created a new border in the Irish sea between Northern Ireland and Britain. “We will not countenance any proposal which would create a new border in the Irish Sea between Northern Ireland and Great Britain,” said Mrs Foster, the DUP leader. “We stressed again the need to respect the constitutional position of Northern Ireland and the economic integrity of the UK single market,” she said after meeting Michel Barnier, the European Union’s chief Brexit negotiator, in Brussels. Mrs Foster’s DUP MPs hold the key to Mrs May’s slender Westminster majority. – Telegraph (£)

  • Irish Sea border would be economic catastrophe, says Arlene Foster – The Times (£)

> Watch on BrexitCentral’s Youtube Channel: DUP leader Arlene Foster on her meeting with Michel Barnier in Brussels

> Nigel Dodds MP on BrexitCentral yesterday: It’s high time Michel Barnier’s actions matched his words on the Irish border

Trump says EU makes business ‘impossible’

US President Donald Trump has said European Union trade rules make it “impossible” for American firms to do business with the bloc. Defending his tariff plans as he hosted the Swedish PM at the White House, Mr Trump said other countries had “taken advantage of” the US for decades. His guest, Stefan Lofven, said: “I am convinced that increased tariffs will hurt us all in the long run.” The EU has drawn up a $3.5bn (£2.5bn) hit list of retaliatory tariffs. Motorbikes, whiskey and T-shirts are on the bloc’s list of 100 American products, the BBC understands. –  BBC News

  • Trump’s trade war threatens to bring the eurozone’s crisis of legitimacy storming back – Jeremy Warner for the Telegraph (£)
  • Africa has been a victim of EU and US trade wars for years – Afua Hirsch for the Guardian

Italy’s radical new leaders denounce EU Brexit strategy as foolish dogma

Leaders of Italy’s triumphant conservative alliance have called for a radical change in the EU’s negotiating stance over Brexit, describing threats to restrict trade and punish Britain as ideological idiocy.  “Great Britain is a friendly country with a long tradition of trading with Italy,” said Matteo Salvini, leader of the Lega party and the man poised to become prime minister if the centre-Right coalition forms the next government. “You made a free choice with Brexit and I very much hope that it will be possible to maintain completely open trade with the EU without any penalties,” he told The Daily Telegraph. – Telegraph (£)

  • Italian election ‘winners’ demand EU change Brexit negotiation stance –  Express
  • The Italian election has shattered any illusion that Europe’s populists are in retreat – Luigi Scazzieri for the Telegraph (£)
  • Now it’s time for ‘Italeave’ – Dominic Standish for Spiked

Ted Bromund: The Problem with Brexit isn’t Britain – it’s the European Commission

Several decades of studying Britain’s relations with the European Union and its predecessor organizations have left me pessimistic about the U.K.’s ability to secure exit from the E.U. on the terms that appear clearly to be in everyone’s best interests. And a few days in Brussels have led me to conclude that the prospect of a negotiated exit is growing more remote… In spite of all the deliberate mystification involved in Brexit, the core of the problem is quite simple. After Britain legally exits the E.U. at the end of March 2019, it will have precisely the same relationship to the E.U. as the U.S. does today. All British goods and services sold in the E.U. will have to meet E.U. standards, and all E.U. goods and services sold in Britain will have to meet British standards. The only question of substance is whether Britain and the E.U. should start discriminating against each other’s trade on the basis of national origin. – Ted Bromund for National Review

Daniel Finkelstein: Brussels should start listening to voters

This week I met a senior diplomat from an EU country who, in a somewhat annoying way, shook her head at the denseness of the British who just don’t get the point about cherry-picking and so on. Yes, that is the EU’s position. Yes, we should have expected it would be. Yes, they probably won’t budge from it. Yes, we can’t do much about it. But no, their position is not inevitable. No, they’re not merely following logic while we are away with the fairies. Consider what has happened in Italy. The coming weeks will see a struggle for power between the populists and the far right. A sort of Iran-Iraq war of coalition making, in which one only wishes that both sides could lose. The result of Sunday’s general election was so bad that even the failure of the appalling Silvio Berlusconi came as a disappointment. – Daniel Finkelstein for The Times (£)

Paul Maskey: I’m a Sinn Féin MP. This is why I won’t go to Westminster, even over Brexit

In recent weeks, in the light of Brexit negotiations and the Conservatives’ fragile majority propped up by the Democratic Unionist party, there have been calls from various quarters for Sinn Féin MPs to abandon the Irish republican principle of abstentionism and take part in the British parliament. A debate has opened up around this principle, particularly for a British audience which may not be aware of its political significance in Ireland… The crucial point here is that we are not British MPs. We are Irish MPs and we believe the interests of the Irish people can only be served by democratic institutions on the island of Ireland. Sinn Féin goes to the electorate seeking a mandate for that position. We are elected as MPs by people who vote for Sinn Féin not to take seats at Westminster. – Paul Maskey for the Guardian

Asa Bennett: European leaders have to decide if they want a Brexit deal or just to virtue signal

European officials were meant to release their opening offer to Britain by way of a trade deal today, but they decided at the last minute to wait until tomorrow. The draft guidelines were set to indicate that all Theresa May could expect from Brussels was a Canada-style trade deal, capturing the only result Michel Barnier has spent months pointing out to all and sundry resided at the end of his Brexit stairway diagram. That might have made sense in Brussels, but his team cannot expect it to then be snapped up by the British.  – Asa Bennett for the Telegraph (£)

Comment in Brief

  • Mainstream media never plays fair on Brexit – John Redwood MP for The Commentator
  • EU negotiator ready to punish British fishermen – Fishing for Leave
  • Universal ID cards would help us control our borders. It’s an idea whose time has come  – Tom Harris for the Telegraph (£)
  • Theresa May’s good Brexit week – Charlie Cooper for Politico
  • Let’s get Brussels out of the kitchen and take back control of our food Matt Kilcoyne for the Telegraph (£)
  • Let the UK be a voice for free trade – John Redwood’s Diary
  • Martin Selmayr scandal threatens to engulf European Commission –  Iain Martin for Reaction
  • Citizens have not really ‘taken back control’ after Brexit – where do we go now? – Reema Patel for the Telegraph (£)

News in Brief

  • Mobile roaming fees could return for Brits in the EU after Brexit – The Sun
  • EU finance chiefs hit back at French plans for greater integration – Telegraph (£)
  • UK exports face immediate tariff hikes after Brexit unless ministers can roll over existing agreements – The Sun
  • Airbus may leave UK unless there is urgent clarity on Brexit trade – Guardian
  • Mega deals drive value of UK purchases of foreign firms to 17-year high – Telegraph (£)
  • EU gives British 18-year-olds can get free InterRail pass – Independent
  • ‘Disturbing’ lack of clarity on non-EU trade deals post-Brexit, MPs warn – Telegraph (£)
  • Ukip may be bankrupt ‘within days’ after £100,000 funding gap – Express
  • Ousted UKIP leader Henry Bolton ‘to set up new party’ – BBC News

And finally… Ryanair’s Michael O’Leary threatens to ground planes after Brexit to make voters ‘rethink’ withdrawal

yanair is threatening to ground its planes after the UK withdraws from the European Union to persuade voters to “rethink” Brexit. The Dublin-based carrier’s chief executive Michael O’Leary said he wants to “create an opportunity” by making people realise they are “no longer going to have cheap holidays”. He told an audience of airline leaders in Brussels: “I think it’s in our interests – not for a long period of time – that the aircraft are grounded. “It’s only when you get to that stage where you’re going to persuade the average British voter that you were lied to in the entire Brexit debate. “You were promised you could leave the EU and everything would stay the same. The reality is you can leave the EU, yes that’s your choice, but everything will fundamentally change.”  –  Telegraph (£)