When ministers meet at Chequers this week, they must find a solution to the seemingly intractable question of whether to align or diverge from the EU.
But a vote on some form of customs union is coming. Might it become a confidence issue?
The Tees Valley mayor says his area was “left behind in the Blair and Brown years”, and this is a chance to rebalance the economy.
“The language should be that of giving people their chance to succeed and of being on their side – a “people politics” that many practice locally but which must be scaled up.”
Britain could flourish under the minimalist WTO-type settlement that seems to be his bottom line. But it is not the optimal outcome, and threatens a significant downside.
EURATOM, WTO quotas, open skies agreements, banks’ ability to lend – all these involve change which it may not be possible to effect by April 2019.
Many more may gain, but there are those who are understandably aggrieved nonetheless.
A Conservative MP has led the way in proposing how London could be rebalanced away from the super-rich and back towards the mass of its citizens.
The absence of a comprehensive agreement would not be apocalyptic, but it would involve many complexities.
There are some risks to trade, but they should be rationalised and addressed rather than overhyped.
Commentators underestimated our growth potential before the referendum – and some are still doing so.
Ricardo’s theory of comparative advantage is 200 years old, but still often misunderstood.
Agreeing zero tariffs is good, but non-tariff barriers matter just as much.
The Article 50 Bill starts its passage through the Commons today – uniting the Conservative Party and throwing Labour into disarray.
Negotiating new trade deals with it and similar countries provides a fresh context in which to push for better international standards