Vince Cable: It Appears Britain Could Be Tied To Single Market For A Century
8 December 2017, 10:10 | Updated: 8 December 2017, 10:13
Sir Vince Cable says it appears Britain could be tied to the single market and customs union until the Irish border question is solved, which could take a “century”.
The Liberal Democrat leader was speaking after the UK and EU announced an agreement on the first phase of the Brexit talks.
Jean-Claude Juncker declared “sufficient progress” had been made on key areas such as the rights of EU citizens, divorce bill and the Irish border.
Theresa May travelled to Brussels this morning following intensive overnight negotiations.
She said there would be no hard border and the Good Friday Agreement would be upheld.
The Prime Minister added that the deal was “fair” to the British taxpayer.
Sir Vince, a staunch Remainer, said the announcement had left him feeling “generally positive” as it had “reduced the risk of crashing out in a disorderly way”.
He added: “I also infer from what has been said that Brexit is now being tied to the resolution of the Irish border problem.
“In other words Britain will stay in the single market and customs union until the Irish border issue is resolved.
“But, since the Irish border issue is unlikely to be resolved any time this century, it seems to imply we’re staying indefinitely.”