Davis promises independent United Kingdom amid fresh Brexit tensions

David Davis Brexit news

Speaking in the town of Middlesbrough, Davis acknowledged that no new trade deals could enter into effect during a two-year implementation period following Britain's effective exit from the EU, during which the United Kingdom would continue to observe EU customs union and single-market rules.

Chancellor Philip Hammond, Brexit Secretary David Davis and Business Secretary Greg Clark said access to European Union markets would continue on current terms from March 2019 for "around two years".

The other 27 member states have also agreed to consider an extension to the transition period if more time is needed to conclude the free trade accord, which both sides say they want to have in place and working by January 2021.

Responding to some calls to extend Article 50 to delay the official Brexit date if negotiations are not complete by March 2019, Mr Davis added that this "would not solve" numerous problems.

Davis was expected to give more indication of Britain's position on Friday.

He said the chancellor's remarks had "overshadowed" his main point that May wants a deep trade deal with the EU.

Earlier this week he dismissed a suggestion that Britain would be a "vassal state" and urged critics to focus on the opportunities of a future, looser relationship.

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That plan may face resistance from the European Union, which says Britain can't sign new trade deals until it fully leaves the bloc.

New negotiating directives will be issued in March for the second phase of Brexit talks, giving a chance for diplomats to tweak the transition period then, if necessary. However, EU officials note that EU texts agreed past year spell out that both sides will be bound by a principle of "sincere cooperation" while bound by EU treaties.

Responding to the speech Mike Cherry, National Chairman at the Federation of Small Businesses, said: "The UK's 5.7 million small businesses will be satisfied with the Government's drive for a speedy agreement of a time-limited transition period based on the current terms of access to the EU single market and customs union". And we will be able to do so much more with them, when we are an independent trading nation, outside of the EU.

Mr Davis responded to the Chancellor's comments during a speech in Middlesborough, saying: "There is no difference between the Chancellor and myself, and indeed the Prime Minister, in terms that we both want a that serves the British economy and serves the British people".

British MPs gave the green light last week to a landmark Brexit bill that will transfer four decades of European Union rules onto the British statute books, although it faces a battle in passing the upper House of Lords.

Wednesday evening and I am listening, with some disbelief, to a confrontation in a Westminster committee room between two strong supporters of Brexit, the minister David Davis, and celebrity backbencher Jacob Rees-Mogg, famous for his ultra-retro style and views. "We're very happy with where the currency is at the moment", Philip Hammond said in Davos, adding that a stronger pound will tame inflation and help real wages.

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