Today, in response to a letter from Nicky Morgan MP, Chair of the Treasury Select Committee, Philip Hammond refused to rule out the UK staying in some form of Customs Union with the EU after Brexit.
This comes days before the Taxation (Cross Border) Trade Bill, previously known as the Customs Bill, is due to have its second reading in Parliament on Monday. The Government has tabled it as a ‘money bill’, meaning it may bypass the House of Lords.
Commenting, Chris Leslie MP, leading supporter of Open Britain, said:
“Nicky Morgan is absolutely right to stress how vital it is that the Government, as a matter of urgency, reaches an agreement on the UK’s future trading relationship with the EU.
“The clock is ticking to make good on the assertion in the Chancellor’s letter that the UK will retain the freest possible trade in goods.
“New trade deals with other countries will not make up for the loss of trade that will come from leaving the Single Market and the Customs Union, which is why the Government should put membership of both back on the table for the long term.
“With the Customs Bill starting in the Commons on Monday, any attempt by Ministers to duck scrutiny by sidestepping the House of Lords would be wholly unacceptable.”