Thank you for contacting me about leaving the EU.
The UK left the EU on 31 January with a deal. No deal is now an irrelevant concept. The question now is whether we can agree with the EU a deeper trading relationship on the lines of the free trade agreement the EU has with Canada, or whether we have a trading relationship that is based on the 2019 deal, without a free trade agreement and along the lines of Australia’s relationship with the EU.
Negotiations are currently ongoing and both sides are seeking a free trade agreement with no tariffs, quotas, fees or charges across all goods sectors as well as further provisions on services and security cooperation. The Prime Minister has previously stated that there must be an agreement by the time of the European Council summit on 15 October if it is to be ratified in time for next year.
As we approach the 15 October, the UK's chief negotiator, Lord Frost, has said that he will advise the Prime Minister on whether the conditions in his statement have been met or not and consider the situation at that point. If it is clear a deal cannot be reached, I believe we should accept this fact and be ready to trade on the terms of the 2019 deal. I should emphasise that the UK is not asking for a special, bespoke, or unique deal in these negotiations. We are looking for a deal like those the EU has previously struck with other friendly countries like Canada.