A minister has categorically ruled out the UK seeking a Swiss-style Brexit deal with the European Union as he said the question of Britain’s relationship with the bloc has been “settled”.
Robert Jenrick, the immigration minister, said the Government is “going to stick with the relationship that we have secured” and “we are not going to reopen the discussions that we had a few years ago”.
Asked if the Government is going to do a Swiss-style deal with the EU, Mr Jenrick told Sky News: “No, we are not. We have a settled position.”
Mr Jenrick said that “doesn’t mean that we are not interested in improving our trading relations with the European Union” but he added: “But we are not going to reopen the discussions that we had a few years ago. We have a settled view and we are moving forwards on that basis.”
His comments came after Number 10 sources rubbished a suggestion by senior government figures that bespoke Swiss-style arrangements could be sought with the EU, potentially forcing Britain to align with the bloc’s rules and regulations.
Rishi Sunak is now facing a Tory Brexiteer backlash amid fears on the backbenches that the Government could move to soften the original Brexit deal.
Follow the latest updates below.
Minister categorically rules out Swiss-style Brexit deal
Robert Jenrick, the immigration minister, has categorically ruled out the UK seeking a Swiss-style relationship with the European Union.
Asked if the UK is going to do a Swiss-style deal with Brussels, he told Sky News: “No, we are not. We have a settled position. There was a long debate as you well recall and there were respectable arguments on both sides as to the degree of relationship that we had with the European Union but we chose one in 2019, in 2020 when Boris Johnson signed the deal with the European Union which was very clear.
“There wouldn’t be jurisdiction of European judges in the UK, we wouldn’t be paying money to the European Union and there wouldn’t be freedom of movement and those fundamental principles are the ones that will govern our relationship going forward.
“I don’t know where the story came from in the Sunday papers. It is not one that we recognise and we are going to stick with the relationship that we have secured.
“That doesn’t mean that we are not interested in improving our trading relations with the European Union or indeed in my sphere our security and migration partnership with the European Union… but we are not going to reopen the discussions that we had a few years ago. We have a settled view and we are moving forwards on that basis.”
Good morning and welcome to today’s politics live blog.
Brexit is back and leading the political news amid suggestions the Government could look to soften the UK’s deal with the EU and seek Swiss-style arrangements.
The Government is denying the reported move but Tory Brexiteers are nervous and are seeking cast iron assurances that there will be no backsliding.
Rishi Sunak, the Prime Minister, is due to deliver a speech at the CBI conference this morning so the issue may well come up then. The pressure will continue to grow on the PM to clarify the situation until he speaks publicly on the matter.
I will guide you through the key developments.