What are the options for Britain's future relations with the EU?

GETTY•CHANNEL 4Brexit news Bernard Henri Levy said Britain will become

The UK would, however, technically leave the EU customs union, allowing it to negotiate, sign and ratify free trade agreements with other countries and to implement those elements that do not affect the functioning of the temporary customs arrangement, according to its published technical note. He added, "But a temporary backstop is not what we or, I believe, the Northern Irish people, want". "That is why there needs to be more trust and reality about what will be possible and what is not possible in the negotiations".

Brussels had suggested effectively keeping Northern Ireland in a customs union with the bloc in the event a UK-EU agreement didn't prevent a hard border.

Over a quarter of recipients said the UK's Brexit vote made them more inclined to vote for a united Ireland. The current proposal would see Britain applying the EU's external tariffs for a limited period beyond December 2020.

Mrs May also held separate face-to-face meetings in her parliamentary office with Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson and International Trade Secretary Liam Fox.

Mr. Davis and other Brexiteers signed up last month to the "backstop" idea of keeping the entire United Kingdom tied to the bloc's Customs Union rules, if an Irish border solution is not found in time, so long as it was time-limited.

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But he said: "It is now essential that government makes progress on our long-term customs and other border arrangements".

One of the key questions raised by Barnier relates to whether the backstop has a time limit on it.

Mr Davis made it clear that the document would be "decisive" as he said he planned to meet chief European Union negotiator Michel Barnier again for Brexit talks next week.

His comments come ahead of a crunch European Union summit in Brussels at the end of the month, where the European Union hopes to resolve matters such as the Irish border issue.

Amid the indecision, British and European businesses say uncertainty is hurting and they urgently need to know what future trade arrangements will be. Does it respect the integrity of the SM/CU (single market / customs union)?

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Brexit talks have been stalled in Brussels over the question of how to avoid a hard border at the Irish frontier.

Who supports it? This is the official policy of the Liberal Democrats and the favoured outcome of the Best for Britain pressure group and the People's Vote campaign for a second referendum on the final Brexit deal.

In a pointed reference to the absence of Brexit secretary David Davis and his negotiators from Brussels for much of the first half of 2018, he said his team were "happy and ready to step up the frequency of our discussions".

Yesterday's agreement is created to provide a "backstop" - a guarantee of no hard border in Northern Ireland should other solutions fail.

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