James O'Brien sums up the UK's negotiating approach on Brexit

27 February 2020, 11:28 | Updated: 27 February 2020, 11:57

Boris Johnson has published the UK's negotiating position for a post-Brexit trade deal with the EU. James O'Brien read between the lines to explain what it actually means.

Boris Johnson is threatening to walk away from trade talks with the EU in June if no "broad outline" for a deal has been agreed.

In newly published documents, the UK also says the agreement shouldn't force it to follow European standards.

Brussels has previously said Britain must accept some common rules if it wants to keep preferential trading access.

As LBC's Political Editor Theo Usherwood was explaining the UK's position, James summed it up perfectly.

He said: "If they don't do what we want, we'll walk away. And it won't be a no-deal, it will be an Australian deal, which is a new word for a no-deal. And something about fish."

James O'Brien nailed Boris Johnson's plan for a post-Brexit trade deal
James O'Brien nailed Boris Johnson's plan for a post-Brexit trade deal. Picture: LBC / PA

Theo added: "This is setting out the UK's opening position in the EU trade talks, which have until December to conclude.

"And what Michael Gove is saying is that if we get a Canada-style free trade deal with the European Union, that's fine. But if we don't, then we're going to revert to an Australian-style agreement with the European Union.

"But the catch is that Australia doesn't have a deal with the European Union.

"It wants a deal, but it hasn't been given one. One of the issues that's been discussed is injecting cattle with hormones to allow them to grow bigger and fatter. But EU scientists say that that makes the beef carcinogenic, so they won't allow it."

Speaking in the House of Commons, Cabinet Office Minister Michael Gove said it is the Government's aim "to secure a comprehensive free trade agreement" as well as agreements on fisheries, internal security and aviation.

He said: "We're confident that those negotiations will lead to outcomes which work for both the UK and the EU, but this House, our European partners and above all the British people should be in no doubt - at the end of the transition period, on December 31, the United Kingdom will fully recover its economic and political independence.

"We want the best possible trading relationship with the EU, but in a pursuit of a deal, we will not trade away our sovereignty.

"We respect the EU's sovereignty, autonomy and distinctive legal order and we expect them to respect ours.

"We will not accept nor agree to any obligations where our laws are aligned with the EU or the EU's institutions, including the Court of Justice."