Canada’s legal counsel during its trade negotiations with the European Union this morning told Parliament’s Brexit Committee that leaving the EU was like blowing up a bridge connecting two communities.
Rejecting the idea that a Canada-style deal would be good for the UK, Cristophe Bondy told MPs that the Single Market and Customs Union would always deliver more benefits for Britain.
Ian Murray MP, leading supporter of the Open Britain campaign, said:
"David Davis says he wants a Canada-plus-plus-plus deal, but the message from Canada's trade negotiator is very clear: the best deal we could get is to stay in the Single Market and Customs Union.
"The Canada-style deal that is actually on offer from the EU would be disastrous for our country, and the Government knows it. The Prime Minister said in Florence that it would damage our economy, and the Chancellor says it 'does not even remotely replicate the access we have as an EU member.'
"The cost will be paid in a weaker economy and worse public services. That is not what people voted for."
Notes to editors
Theresa May in Florence, 22 September 2017:
"[C]ompared with what exists between Britain and the EU today, it would nevertheless represent such a restriction on our mutual market access that it would benefit neither of our economies.”
Philip Hammond at Chatham House, 2 March 2017:
“The EU-Canada deal has taken seven years and counting to finalise and has still not been approved by the European Parliament!... And let’s be clear: the Canadian trade deal does not even remotely replicate the access we have as an EU member.”