UK urged to remain in custom union

CNC
Added On September 12, 2017

Ireland's Foreign Minister has urged the UK government to consider remaining in a customs union with the EU after Brexit. 
 
The Irish Foreign Minister Simon Coveney said he found it "difficult to accept" the option to remain in a customs union should be dropped before negotiations on trade have begun. 
 
Prime Minister Theresa May's has said Britain will leave Europe's single market and customs union after Brexit. 
 
She also said the UK is seeking a transitional deal offering similar benefits until a new trade agreement is made with the EU. 
 
May said she favored a new UK-EU customs agreement allowing trade to be, quote, "as frictionless as possible." 
 
The government outlined potential customs arrangements in a position paper published last month. 
 
These included a proposed exemption for small businesses in Northern Ireland, which would allow them to continue trading across the border with no new customs regulations.
 
Coveney said the proposals were not compatible with the integrity of the EU's single market.
 
He argued that a vote to leave the EU was never explicitly a vote to leave the Customs Union or Single Market.
 
Coveney said the UK's exit would also require "a substantial transition period that allows everyone to prepare adequately for new realities."
 
More negotiations are still to come.