Davis proposes temporary EU customs deal

‘Britain will today demand that it is allowed to start striking trade deals the day after Brexit – while creating a temporary EU customs deal to prevent border chaos. Brexit Secretary David Davis will set out plans to begin ‘negotiating bold new trade relationships around the world’ as soon as the country leaves the EU in March 2019. But he will ask Brussels to keep in place current customs rules that prevent goods having to be checked as they go between Britain and the EU for an interim period, which could last up to two or three years. Mr Davis will argue that such a deal, where the UK mimics the EU’s tariffs and rules on customs, would give more time for a smooth switch to the new trading regime, which would benefit businesses on both sides of the Channel.’ – Daily Mail

  • The Brexit Secretary says such an arrangement would be mutually beneficial – FT
  • Brussels might try to use the proposal to prevent us signing new trade deals – The Times
  • EU denies claim that it has cut off tech investment in the UK – The Times
  • Foreign Direct Investment has shot up in the last year – Matt Ridley, The Sun
  • Put the Treasury and the Foreign Office in charge of negotiations – Andrew Adonis, The Times
  • Ignore the hot air, this is a pragmatic and sensible plan – The Sun Says
  • Pro-EU MPs try to identify the areas where they can defeat the Government – FT
  • Hammond has lost the Cabinet battle – The Guardian

>Today: ToryDiary: Brexit, customs, implementation and new trade deals. May wants to have her cake and eat it – but not quite yet

>Yesterday: ToryDiary: Philip Hammond, committed Brexiteer

Rifkind: ‘Centrists’ should come clean – they’re conservatives

‘Deciding that we need a new political force is the easiest, laziest thing in the world. Deciding what it ought to actually stand for is quite a lot harder. Pre-election, when Jeremy Corbyn was the big disaster, it was mainly Labour moderates who suggested we needed one of these. Post-election, with Theresa May as the disaster, Conservative moderates are having a go. Most recently they have been led by James Chapman, a former aide to David Davis who has since gone entertainingly rogue…“We,” they want to be able to say, “are the guys with the plan to change Britain!” There’s a dishonesty there, though, because actually they aren’t. It is Brexiteers who want to change Britain, which is why they are taking us out of the European Union. Whereas the thing that has spurred all of this talk of a new party in the first place is the fact that unlike Theresa May, and unlike Jeremy Corbyn, they don’t particularly want Britain to change at all.’ – Hugo Rifkind, The Times

>Yesterday: Nicky Morgan’s column: You’re welcome to your new Democrat Party. I’m sticking with the Tories – to fight, fight and fight again for moderation.

Record number of state school students admitted to Oxbridge

‘The majority of students admitted to Oxbridge last year were from state schools, figures show. In total, more than half of students who took up places at Oxford in 2016 came from the state sector. The institution said that this was the highest figure on record. At Cambridge, 63 per cent of acceptances were for state school students, up from 62 per cent the year before. Including international students, Oxford received 19,144 applications for around 3,200 places, while Cambridge had 16,750 applications and took 3,457 students. Dr Samina Khan, director of undergraduate admissions and outreach at Oxford University, said the latest statistics were ‘hugely encouraging’.’ – Daily Mail

  • Universities’ battle for clearing applicants intensifies – The Times
  • Charity accuses private schools of ‘gaming’ the system – The Times
  • Learndirect faces collapse – FT

Councils rake in £1.5 billion from parking

‘Councils are raking in £1.5billion a year on parking – including more than £1billion on fines alone – it has been revealed. Brighton and Hove Council has made the most money outside London with £28.7million, shortly followed by Nottingham city council with £20.9m and Birmingham city council with £18.3m. The five authorities with the highest revenue were all in London, led by Westminster with a whopping £76.4million. This was followed by Kensington and Chelsea (£46.1m), Camden (£38.1m), Hammersmith and Fulham (£35.6m), and Wandsworth (£30.4m).’ – Daily Mail

Khan kills off Garden Bridge

‘It was intended to be a “floating paradise” for London but instead Joanna Lumley’s vision of a Thames garden bridge has collapsed amid acrimony, with the city’s mayor, Sadiq Khan, and his predecessor Boris Johnson arguing over how £37m of public money had been spent on a project without a brick being laid. The actor had conceived it as a memorial to Princess Diana, but the trust behind the £200m project for a tree-lined bridge between Temple on the north side of the Thames and the South Bank said it had to abandon the scheme because it did not have support of the mayor whose financial support had become necessary for its survival. Khan responded by saying Londoners should be “very angry” about the amount of public money already spent on a scheme that had become increasingly controversial…His Tory predecessor, a proponent of the bridge, hit back, saying it was so sad that Khan had “killed” what he said could have been a “beautiful project” and suggested it could one day still be built. “The only crumb of comfort is that good plans have now been developed and can be readily revived,” Johnson said.’ – The Guardian

Thousands of prison inmates have served longer than their minimum sentence

‘David Lidington, the justice secretary, was urged yesterday to “get a grip” on more than 3,300 prisoners who are still in jail despite having served more than their minimum sentence as set by the courts. The inmates are serving indeterminate sentences for public protection (IPP) in England and Wales, with 85 per cent of them having served longer than their minimum term or tariff. Official figures show that 224 of them had served between six and ten years longer than the tariff laid down by the court. Forty-eight offenders given a minimum term of less than two years have been in jail for ten years or more. Nick Hardwick, chairman of the Parole Board, said that hundreds of prisoners were in jail several years beyond their minimum tariff, and many were prone to self-harm.’ – The Times

  • The prison system is overdue for reform – The Times Leader
  • Police ignore complaints about drug dealing in broad daylight – The Sun
  • They should enforce the law – The Sun Says

Salmond under fire for ‘degrading’ sexual joke about female politicians

‘Alex Salmond was blasted for telling a joke about having sex with senior female political figures, including Theresa May. Scottish Labour called the former SNP leader’s crude gag “a horrendous example to young men”. Mr Salmond was opening his Edinburgh festival show. He sniggered: “I promised you today we’d either have Theresa May, or Nicola Sturgeon, or Ruth Davidson, or Melania Trump, but I couldn’t make any of these wonderful women come…” Following a drum roll, he added “…to the show.” Critics accused him of reducing women to “sexualised punchlines”. Scottish Tory MSP Murdo Fraser said: “Alex Salmond has gone from being Scotland’s First Minister to a bore propping up the bar in the space of a few years.” Labour MSP Monica Lennon said: “It would be wrong to laugh these comments off as a bit of banter. This is a former First Minister degrading female politicians.”’ – The Sun

  • Labour MP wishes homophobic tyrant ‘happy birthday’ – The Sun
  • Edinburgh zoo worker put in danger by panda mistake – Daily Telegraph

Trump finally condemns white supremacists

‘President Donald Trump insisted on Monday that he and his administration forcefully denounce the ‘evil’ embodied by white supremacists and other bigoted hate groups whose weekend rally in Virginia left one woman dead and 20 others injured. ‘Racism is evil. And those who cause violence in its name are criminals and thugs, including the KKK, neo-Nazis, white supremacists and other hate groups that are repugnant to everything we hold dear as Americans,’ the president said at the White House. We are a nation founded on the truth that all of us are created equal. We are equal in the eyes of our creator. We are equal under the law. And we are equal under our Constitution. Those who spread violence in the name of bigotry strike at the very core of America.’ – Daily Mail

News in Brief

  • Save Big Ben’s bongs – The Sun Says
  • Bernard Kenny, who tried to save Jo Cox, has died – Daily Mail
  • Arthritis in knees is preventable – The Times
  • Black Death outbreak in New Mexico – The Sun
  • Concern over Japanese fungus found in NHS patients – Daily Telegraph
  • Car ‘deliberately’ driven into Paris restaurant – Daily Mail
  • North Korea allegedly obtained rocket components from Ukrainian factory – The Times
  • Bacon sandwich prices set to soar – The Sun
  • Partition was Nehru’s fault, not Britain’s – Zareer Masani, Daily Telegraph