Peter Foster @pmdfoster Europe Editor of the Daily Telegraph. Formerly based in Washington DC, Beijing and New Delhi. Opinions my own. May. 05, 2019 1 min read

Where @ShippersUnbound reveals the Tory-Labour #brexit deal...which doesn’t make that much sense...

Apparently it’s a ‘customs arrangement til 2022 election...and then may the best team win on fight for hard/soft Brexit.


If this gets the Withdrawal Agreement over the line, Customs is a pretty moot question until 2022 because we’re in a standstill transition could in theory end earlier But..../2

If the U.K. has passed the Withdrawal Agreement it will also have agreed to the Irish backstop - no hard border/no additional infrastructure and related checks and controls.

Which means hard Brexit advocates MUST fix this issue as part of trade/future talks. /3

I’d point you to my interview this morning with @simoncoveney the Irish Deputy prime minister in @Telegraph @TelePolitics ...right now alternative arrangements don’t exist. /4 

Even on the benign Dover-Calais (GB-EU) border where u can have infrastructure etc a tech border isn’t ready til 2030 according to its most optimistic proponents. /5

So now on earth is an Con-Lab agreement to 2022 meaningful in anyway?

Reminds me of @DavidDavisMP being bought off with an aspirational “we’ll have a trade deal by end 2020” when the govt launched its June 2018 customs paper that first accepted need for CU in backstop /7

And all this talk of Boris-proofing the deal by entrenching the temporary CU pledge in U.K. law overlooks the reality that passing the #brexot deal just opens the door to a trade negotiation where border still needs fixing. /8

And right now, as @simoncoveney says, that amounts to a customs union....which is obvs why hard Brexiteers hate the deal.

All Tory howling about @theresa_may selling them out is funny. She already did that last November. /9

You’d think at some point (given abject failure of the strategy so far) we’d give up trying to move this thing forward with obfuscation and half-truths, but apparently not. ENDS

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