07:46 GMT26 February 2020
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    British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has stated that the UK will not sign up to any of the EU’s rules and regulations for the sake of securing a post-Brexit free trade deal.

    The comments come in response to Brussel’s Chief EU negotiator Michel Barnier’s assertions that this is what Britain will have to do in order to avoid leaving the bloc under WTO rules.

    Johnson however now firmly believes that an Australian or Canadian style agreement can be hashed out in the coming months.

    The Brexit Party’s Diane James gave her views on the matter.

    Sputnik: Will Boris Johnson cave into the EU’s demands during the upcoming negotiations with the bloc?

    Diane James: We’re at the very early stages of the negotiations during the transition period, which hopefully will end on the 31st of December, and what you’ve got is both sides effectively putting up their red lines, and understandably, because Boris Johnson has in the past made his position clear, and it does dovetail with what people expect him to deliver, it is him saying “no, we are not going to follow the EU’s rules and regulations, we are not going to allow the ECJ to have cover over everything that happens in terms of the trade deal, because that’s not Brexit”.

    Boris Johnson is making exactly the right noises, he’s making his position very clear, and it’s just as hard as the EU, but I fully expect that Boris Johnson will deliver on this.

    Sputnik: Would a Canada style free trade post-Brexit trade deal with the EU be beneficial for the British economy?

    Diane James: My personal position has always been that no deal was the best option because that took us into the territory where we called the shots, and where effectively we had the EU at our mercy, but having said that; Boris Johnson has never made a secret of the fact that he would prefer to leave under the terms of a Canada-style trade deal.

    To some extent I can support that, on the basis that it has been put in place, it is tried and tested, it doesn’t hold Canada to the type of rules and regulations that the EU is now demanding of the UK, so we have got an example that we can follow in all good conscience, and know that it is better for the UK, and ultimately it does mean that it can be easily done within the time frame that Boris Johnson has set out.

    The EU is constantly saying that it took seven years to arrange the Canada deal, ok it did; but you’ve now got another country that wants to adopt almost exactly the same thing, in which case, as Boris Johnson has said, it’s oven-ready, it’s off the shelf, let’s just move on with that.

    Sputnik: Has SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon been too hasty with her calls for a second Scottish independence referendum?

    Diane James: We are not yet out of the EU, we’ve got a one-year transition phase, and for Nicola Sturgeon to be demanding another independence referendum before we’ve actually left the EU, is a very ridiculous position for her to take.

    She may well have a significant number of MPs in Westminster, she may well control the Holyrood Parliament, but ultimately, if she believes in democracy; she’s got to go back to her country and her voters, and put on the table, in a very honest fashion, exactly what leaving the EU, and the implication which means breaking up the UK, actually means.

    If she’s not prepared to be honest with her country folk, and say just because we’ve broken up the UK, that Scotland is supposedly not independent, because it wouldn’t be if she takes the country straight back into the EU, then quite frankly her whole logic is completely and utterly flawed.

    The views and opinions expressed in the article do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.

    Tags:
    trade deal, European Union (EU), Boris Johnson, Brexit, United Kingdom
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