Tony Blair’s report has demanded Boris Johnson delay Brexit by 12 months to avoid a “disastrous no deal” because it is now “too late” to strike an agreement with Brussels. The study, commissioned by the Tony Blair Institute, says it would be a “grave mistake” for Britain not to agree a delay at the same time it faces a “deep recession” due to the coronavirus crisis.
Express.co.uk is now asking you do you agree with arch Remainer Mr Blair? Should Prime Minister Mr Johnson delay Brexit by a whole year?
The report, commissioned by ex-Labour premier Mr Blair and written by author Anton Spisak, said there is “a landing zone for a sensible compromise” between the UK and EU to agree on a deal.
It argued the “responsible” thing to do was agree on a “standstill” implementation period.
Tony Blair’s report urged for Boris Johnson to delay Brexit by a year
It writes: “It is only possible if both sides show a willingness to move away from principled stances and be realistic about what can be achieved by the end of this year. The alternative is a disastrous no deal.
“Such a standstill period wouldn’t be an automatic extension of the transition period, which the UK government has already rejected.
“Rather, it would be an actual implementation period – legally contained within the future treaty – allowing both sides to complete the technical negotiations, ratify the deal, and implement it, without rushing through a quick and poor agreement and risking far bigger ratification and legal problems down the line.
“Failing to agree to such a time-limited standstill period when the UK and European economies are facing a deep recession following the pandemic would be a grave mistake.”
The report urges the UK to compromise on a range of issues including state aid, environment and labour standards and governance.
It urges the UK to agree to a “system of sanctions if it were to breach commitments to prevent it undercutting the EU – enforced by independent domestic regulators”.
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The UK should agree on a “set of common objectives” with the EU to maintain an effective domestic anti-subsidy regime for state aid.
The report calls for both sides to agree on “upholding existing protections” in terms of environment and labour standards.
While it urges the UK and EU to agree on an “overarching institutional framework” for governance to “bridge the divide between the EU’s push for a single agreement and the UK’s wish for multiple separate deals”.
Mr Blair has long been an outspoken critic of Brexit since the UK voted to unshackle from the bloc in 2016.
The former Labour Prime Minister, who walked away from frontline politics more than 10 years ago, was a prominent figure of the People’s Vote campaign.