Boris Johnson has threatened to walk away from post-Brexit trade talks in June unless there is a ‘broad outline’ of his desired deal by then.
The government has revealed a tough negotiating mandate that puts the Prime Minister on a collision course with Brussels, as the two sides attempt to form a new relationship.
According to an official government document released this morning, Johnson’s administration wants to see the ‘broad outlines’ of a ‘Canada-style’ deal by the time he meets with EU leaders in the summer.
The government has until the end of the year to negotiate a trade deal on a variety of things, from fishing to transport, but may pull out and focus on preparing for a no-deal if progress isn’t made.
The mandate states: “If that does not seem to be the case at the June meeting, the Government will need to decide whether the UK’s attention should move away from negotiations and focus solely on continuing domestic preparations to exit the transition period in an orderly fashion.”
The back-up plan is preparing for what used to be called a ‘no deal’ scenario – trading with the EU on World Trade Organisation (WTO) terms. Critics have claimed that this may damaged the economy.