05:23 GMT20 January 2021
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    The UK will pursue a free trade agreement with the EU after Brexit, however such deal cannot mean membership in European single market, UK Prime Minister Theresa May said during her press conference outlining the negotiating strategy for Brexit talks with the European Union.

    "This agreement should allow for the freest possible trade in goods and services between Britain and the EU's member states. It should give British companies the maximum freedom to trade with and operate within European markets, and let European businesses do the same in Britain," May said. "But I want to be clear: What I am proposing cannot mean membership of the single market," May said.

    May added that the UK has already started preliminary trade talks with Australia, New Zealand and India.

    The UK is not seeking partial membership of the EU, May said, adding that after Brexit, the country will adopt a model already used by other countries.

    "We are leaving the European Union, but we are not leaving Europe," May stressed, noting that the success of the EU is in Britain's interests.

    Prime Minister Theresa May promised she would put the final agreement on Britain's exit from the European Union to a vote in parliament, stressing it would seek to stay a key European partner.

    "When it comes to Parliament, there is one other way I would like to provide certainty," she said in a speech in London. "I can confirm today that the government will put the final deal that is agreed between the UK and the EU to a vote in both houses of Parliament before it comes into force."

    The UK-EU negotiating process is scheduled to last for two years. An informal EU meeting is set for February 3 in Malta, where 27 EU leaders will discuss Brexit without UK's participation.

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