Fox: No deal agreed on free move­ment

Trade sec­re­tary says that any such move would ‘not keep faith’ with the ref­er­en­dum re­sult

The Courier & Advertiser (Fife Edition) - - NEWS - Shaun con­nolly

In­ter­na­tional Trade Sec­re­tary Liam Fox has in­sisted the Cab­i­net has not agreed a deal to al­low free move­ment of labour for three years af­ter Brexit.

Dr Fox said that any such move would “not keep faith” with the ref­er­en­dum re­sult.

He told the Sun­day Times: “If there have been dis­cus­sions on that I have not been party to them.”

The in­ter­ven­tion comes af­ter Chan­cel­lor Philip Ham­mond said there was “broad ac­cep­tance” in Cab­i­net of a post-Brexit tran­si­tional pe­riod last­ing up to three years.

He said this would mean “many ar­range­ments re­main­ing very sim­i­lar to how they were the day be­fore we ex­ited the Euro­pean Union”.

Mr Ham­mond said there would be a reg­is­tra­tion sys­tem in place for peo­ple com­ing to work in the UK af­ter Brexit, dur­ing the tran­si­tional pe­riod.

“If they come here to work af­ter we leave the Euro­pean Union, dur­ing that tran­si­tional pe­riod, the sen­si­ble ap­proach will be to seek to reg­is­ter peo­ple so that we know who’s com­ing and who’s go­ing,” he said.

Tory ten­sions were also on show as for­mer Brexit min­is­ter David Jones branded Mr Ham­mond’s tran­si­tion ini­tia­tive “deeply dan­ger­ous” as he ac­cused the Chan­cel­lor of “go­ing on ma­noeu­vres” while Prime Min­is­ter Theresa May was abroad on hol­i­day.

“All this ag­i­ta­tion by the Chan­cel­lor and his al­lies is hugely dis­cour­te­ous to her and un­der­mines her au­thor­ity,” Mr Jones said in The Mail on Sun­day.

Pro-EU Tory MP Sir Nicholas Soames praised the Chan­cel­lor, telling the news­pa­per: “He has re­stored dis­ci­pline to the po­lit­i­cal in­fant class who want Brexit at any cost.

“In­stead of mind­lessly crit­i­cis­ing him, they should thank him for putting a stop to what was in dan­ger of be­com­ing a pub brawl.”

The war of words came as an ally of For­eign Sec­re­tary Boris John­son also crit­i­cised Mr Ham­mond’s plans.

Ger­ard Lyons, who was an eco­nomic ad­viser to Mr John­son when he was Lon­don mayor, said a two-year tran­si­tion pe­riod would work bet­ter.

Writ­ing in the Sun­day Tele­graph, he said: “Many of the ‘risks’ be­ing high­lighted about Brexit are per­ceived risks, not real risks.

“And a two-year tran­si­tion would al­le­vi­ate many con­cerns.”

Mean­while, di­vi­sions in Labour over Brexit emerged as se­nior fig­ures urged Jeremy Cor­byn to com­mit to stay­ing in the sin­gle mar­ket.

The Ob­server re­ported that op­po­nents of quit­ting the sin­gle mar­ket may pro­voke a show­down at the party’s au­tumn con­fer­ence by try­ing to force a vote on the is­sue.

All this ag­i­ta­tion bythe Chan­cel­lor and his al­lies is hugely dis­cour­te­ous to her and un­der­mines her au­thor­ity. BREXIT MIN­IS­TER DAVID JONES

Pic­ture: PA.

Liam Fox in­sists the Cab­i­net has not made a deal to al­low free move­ment of labour.

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