Boris Johnson Welcomes Prospect Of 'Canada-Style' Brexit Deal
The EU is prepared to offer the UK an alternative to the British Prime Minister's current Brexit proposals - a proposal which Boris Johnson's calling a "superb way forward".
The former British foreign secretary, and many other Tory Brexiteers, support a Canada-style free trade agreement.
European Council President Donald Tusk yesterday suggested it could still be a solution.
Following a meeting with Taoiseach Leo Varadkar yesterday, Mr Tusk said: "From the very beginning, the EU offer has been not just a Canada deal, but a Canada+++ deal.
"Much further-reaching on trade, on internal security and on foreign policy cooperation. This is a true measure of respect. And this offer remains in place."
Tusk’s Canada +++ offer shows there is a superb way forward that can solve the Irish border problem and deliver a free trade based partnership that works well for both sides of the channel - as I set out last week in my plan for a better brexit https://t.co/qSxC4nnReR— Boris Johnson (@BorisJohnson) October 4, 2018
However, it's still not clear how this idea would avoid a hard border in Northern Ireland.
Boris Johnson claimed: "The first step to achieving a mutually beneficial SuperCanada deal is the removal of the Irish backstop so there is no threat to the Union whatsoever."
The backstop to avoid a hard border has been a non-negotiable pledge for the EU and Ireland.
Leo Varadkar is not sure what final form a 'Canada-style' deal would take.
He said: "If we do negotiate a Canada +++... minus... asterisk... whatever.... it's going to take the transition period to negotiate that agreement.
"There is a possibility that an agreement of that nature - which would be unique - would take more than the transition period to do."
Theresa May has repeatedly ruled out a Canada-style deal, instead continuing to insist that her 'Chequers' proposals are the way forward.