The Lib Dems passed a motion at their spring conference this month for the UK to rejoin the EU single market for free trade, calling for Government to stabilise the UK-EU relationship and strengthen “ties of trust and friendship”. The policy paper, backed by party leadership, states: “The best option, bringing most benefits to the UK economy and society, is to seek to join the single market.”
Liberal Democrats MP Layla Moran, spokesperson for Foreign Affairs, discussed the topic on Politics Live today.
She noted that trade has been disrupted as a result of a “hard” Brexit and attributed this to “the fact that we haven’t got a trading relationship that is giving us best value for money in this country”.
Last week, the Office for Budget Responsibility – the UK’s fiscal watchdog – released its latest fiscal output report, which forecasts that Britain’s independence from the EU will continue lead to a 15 percent fall in trade.
Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak said it was “too early” to be definitive on the exact cause for falling trade.
He said it was “inevitable” that changing the relationship with the EU would impact trade flows.
The Liberal Democrats claim that rejoining the single market would give the UK full access to the European Economic Area, reintroduce freedom of movement and resolve the Northern Ireland Brexit deal.
Ms Moran added that the UK rejoining the single market was part of a four-step plan which would not come into effect until a “generation’s time”.
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