Boris Johnson took part in Prime Minister’s Questions in Westminster before heading to Brussels for trade talks this evening
The Prime Minister has said that “a good deal is there to be done” in regard to the EU on Brexit trade talks but he said that the bloc is currently insisting on terms with which no British Prime Minister could possibly accept.
Boris Johnson spoke during Prime Minister’s Questions before he travels to Brussels for crunch talks with Ursula von der Leyen, the European Commission President, with little more than three weeks before the transitionary period ends on the 31st of December.
Responding to a question from his Brexiteer colleague Sir Edward Leigh, he tried to assure MPs a “good deal is still there to be done” with the EU.
This comes after the government is set to drop parts of legislation that could have potentially seen the UK breaking international law after reaching an “agreement in principle” on Brexit divorce issues.
But, outlining the difficulties facing the talks, he added: “Our friends in the EU are currently insisting if they pass a new law in the future which we don’t comply, they have the automatic right to punish us.”
“And they are insisting the UK should be the only country in the world not to have sovereign control over its fishing waters.”
“I don’t believe those are terms any prime minister of this country should accept.”
Mr Johnson again insisted the UK would “prosper mightily” with or without a post-Brexit trade deal.
As the deadline looms, Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer said the prime minister had told the British people “the chances of no deal were absolutely zero” and questioned why anyone should believe what he says about Brexit.
But Mr Johnson said he had not misled people and claimed the government “had an oven-ready deal, which was the Withdrawal Agreement” – not a free trade deal.
This comes after there are fears that some of the poorer countries in the world could be left behind as richer nations “hoard” more doses of the COVID-19 vaccines than they actually need.
He added that “whatever happens from 1 January”, the UK will “be able to get on” with the new points-based immigration system, as well as be able to “get on with instituting free ports, low tax free ports, in places where jobs and growth are most needed around the country”.
“We’ll be able to honour our promise to the British people and institute higher animal welfare standards, and we’ll be able to do free trade deals and we’ll get our money back as well,” Mr Johnson told MPs