From the exchange between Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, The Rt Hon David Davis MP and The Rt Hon Jacob Rees-Mogg MP, it is clear that the UK Government have agreed to a two year transition deal that changes NOTHING about our current relationship with the EU. This is not a Norway style agreement. Norway is not a member of The Customs Union and can negotiate trade deals on it’s own (it chooses to negotiate trade deals through EFTA). The two year transition deal we are required to sign up to will NOT allow us to negotiate trade deals because it requires us to be a member of The Customs Union. From, ANNEX to the Recommendation for a COUNCIL DECISION supplementing the Council Decision of 22 May 2017 authorising the opening of negotiations with the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland for an agreement setting out the arrangements for its withdrawal from the European Union…
15. In line with the European Council guidelines of 15 December 2017, any transitional arrangements require the United Kingdom’s continued participation in the Customs Union and the Single Market (with all four freedoms) during the transition. The United Kingdom should take all necessary measures to preserve the integrity of the Single Market and of the Customs Union. The United Kingdom should continue to comply with the Union trade policy. It should also in particular ensure that its customs authorities continue to act in accordance with the mission of EU customs authorities including by collecting Common Customs Tariff duties and by performing all checks required under Union law at the border vis-à-vis other third countries.
The EU is a customs union: EU members have a common trade policy, a common external tariff, and no internal border controls for goods. The EU is therefore represented by the EU Commission in all international trade negotiations and member states cannot negotiate their own trade deals with third countries. 19 Sep 2017
I cannot see Jacob Rees-Mogg, chairman of the influential European Research Group agreeing to this and this could easily end with a leadership challenge to overthrow Theresa May. We simply cannot agree to a deal which stops us negotiating and signing our own trade deals for at least two years. Do we also want Free Movement of People to continue for another two years? What if we are made to implement EU laws that are detrimental to our country? This is quite simply, lunacy of the highest order.