Brexit: UK could remain partial member of EU customs union

Brexit options are more than just hard or soft, says Liam Fox. Picture: Getty Images
Brexit options are more than just hard or soft, says Liam Fox. Picture: Getty Images
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The UK could remain a partial member of the EU Customs Union after Brexit, International Trade Secretary Liam Fox has signalled.

Dr Fox insisted Brexit was not like a “boiled egg” and there were more options than going for either a hard or soft withdrawal from the EU.

Remaining a full member of the Customs Union means the UK would have to keep the same international tariffs as the EU which would severely hamper Britain’s ability to cut free trade deals after Brexit.

Dr Fox told BBC’s Andrew Marr Show: “We want to look at all the different things, it’s not binary.

“I hear people talking about hard Brexit and soft Brexit as though it’s a boiled egg we are talking about, it’s a little more complex. So, Turkey, for example, is in part of the Customs Union, but not other parts.”

The Cabinet minister refused to be drawn when asked if he could support staying in the Customs Union, saying: “I’ll argue my case inside Cabinet.”

Dr Fox added: “The government will come to a collective view on this once we have looked at all the issues.

“We can’t go for a quick result, we have to get the right result. And whatever result we do come to, we have to be able to put in front of the British people the reasoning for coming to that result.”