The EU “had [the UK] where they wanted us” when Boris Johnson signed the withdrawal agreement in 2019, Nigel Farage has claimed. The former Brexit Party leader gave a brutal analysis of the latest developments in the Brexit trade talks. With less than three weeks before the transition period deadline, Mr Farage warned that the deal that would likely be struck would not give Britain back “complete control”.
During a livestream, he told viewers: “From the absolute beginning the European Union were determined that we would not simply leave.
“They wanted it to be a very different new kind of deal.
“Indeed just last week, Ursula von der Leyen tweeted ahead of Boris Johnson going over to Brussels that he was coming to discuss ‘the partnership agreement’. This is not an FTA.
“If Boris Johnson says we want a Canada-style deal, well why did he make the absolutely fundamental mistake of signing the withdrawal agreement?”
Mr Farage continued: “Remember that? Last October, he came back from Brussels with an oven-ready deal.
“Well it wasn’t an oven-ready deal, it was a new EU treaty.
“Within days, Barnier had it leather-bound and was carrying it under his arm through the European Parliament.
“By us signing up to a new treaty, we made a whole series of commitments that didn’t get us out of the level playing field.”
The Prime Minister and EU Commission President have mandated negotiations to “continue talks and see if an agreement at this late stage can be made”.
A UK Government source has since said that Brexit trade talks “remain difficult” and “have not made significant progress in recent days”.
They told Sky News: “Talks remain difficult and we have not made significant progress in recent days, despite efforts by the UK side to bring energy and ideas to the process.
“Like any sovereign country, we must have the right to take our own decisions and to choose regulations that suit the UK.
“We can not sign up to dynamic alignment through the back door. The UK can not be locked into the EU’s regulatory orbit.”