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We Won't Adopt Every Piece of Canada-EU Free Trade Deal – UK Brexit Minister

© AFP 2023 / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASA pro-European Union,(EU), anti-Brexit demonstrator holds the EU and UK flags outside the Houses of Parliament, in central London on January 22, 2018
A pro-European Union,(EU), anti-Brexit demonstrator holds the EU and UK flags outside the Houses of Parliament, in central London on January 22, 2018 - Sputnik International
Brexit minister David Davis has said at a UK parliament committee meeting that the existing free trade agreements with the European Union "provide the floor, not the ceiling" for what London could achieve after leaving the bloc.

On Wednesday, Davis said that the Canada-EU Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) is not enough for Britain, adding that the UK won't adopt every piece of the deal. However, Davis noted that there were many good templates in the agreement.

Previously, Davis stated that the UK hoped to secure a free-trade deal with no tariffs after the withdrawal from the EU, calling it "Canada plus plus plus."

CETA, which scraps most of the tariffs between the member states, entered into force provisionally in September 2017 and is now expected to be fully enacted after ratification by all EU member states.

European Market

The minister at the same time noted that the UK aims to get the maximum access to the European market without making extra payments for it.

"We may well be involved in scientific research issues, for example, where we will make a contribution, Erasmus, things like that. Why? Because it’s in our interest. But I don’t see us paying for access," he told a parliament committee. 

Transition Period

Davis said that London expects to reach the transition agreement with the EU by March, saying it will keep negotiating trade deals with other countries after the transition period starts.

"What the commission and [EU negotiator Michel] Barnier have said is they want to conclude it [by] Christmas 2020 … Bluntly, it’s not going to be a deal-breaker one way or another," Davis said, adding that there were some conveniences to the EU-proposed date.

He noted that London expects to continue talks on some deal provisions during the transition period. He added that during this period the country will remain under the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice.

The minister pointed out that he is relaxed about UK's withdrawal process, saying his primary concern is Britain's future ties with the European Union.

Responding to widespread concerns over the migrant issue in the UK after Brexit, he said that London won't practice forced deportations.

The UK kicked off Brexit negotiations with the EU last June following the milestone referendum in Britain to pull out from the bloc. The talks are expected to be completed by the end of March 2019.

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