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The customs union means the EU is a trade bloc with all the countries involved applying the same tariff on goods from outside coming in.

Lawmakers will have to decide whether to back the government or reject the agreement - with the risk that Britain could crash out of the European Union next year without any deal in place.

This should be good for the Pound as staying the customs union eliminates uncertainty for businesses and is suggestive of a a softer-style Brexit.

In view of a meaningful vote on leaving the Customs' Union in the following months, Theresa May does not have a parliamentary majority, unless she can count on Labour votes. What's curious about this dissing of the customs partnership plan is that it was trumpeted by DExEU itself (along with a more complicated "hi-tech" solution of "highly streamlined" customs checks) as an answer to the problem of avoiding a hard border in Northern Ireland.

She faces further political conflict over the issue this week ahead of a vote in the House of Commons.

On Thursday, Conservative supporters of remaining in the Customs' Union, including Anna Soubry and Kenneth Clarke, will argue their case.

Theresa May is facing a fresh Brexit showdown in the Commons this week over her stance on the customs union.

He said Switzerland - deemed a "third country" in the eyes of European Union authorities - has long since ironed out any technical issues that might impede it from having its regulatory system recognised as equivalent to the bloc's own.

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Mrs May last week suffered a defeat at the hands of peers in the House of Lords when they backed an amendment to compel ministers to explain what they have done to ensure that Britain can remain in a customs union after leaving the EU.

"If we leave the European Union, we leave the customs union and we don't have anything to replace it with, we suddenly, when we leave, are going to have to make not just new deals with countries across the world for free trade but also all the other ones that Europe had made until that point".

"Turkey has a customs union with the EU but isn't in the bloc or the single market", the news website notes.

Australian Ambitions | Australian prime minister Malcolm Turnbull and May agreed on their shared goal to form a bilateral free-trade agreement after the United Kingdom leaves the EU.

The Times said Brexit Secretary David Davis, International Trade Secretary Liam Fox, and Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson were concerned this would "encourage Brussels to press for Britain to stay in a customs union after Brexit".

Dr Fox is due to speak about the opportunities of Brexit in a speech to the financial industry on Monday.

■ Global trade secretary Liam Fox has pledged to cut "bureaucracy and red tape" to promote free trade post-Brexit. Whatever one's view on the referendum result, it must be acknowledged that, outside the European Union, this country will enjoy a new degree of economic agility.


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