Boris Johnson has warned there is a “strong possibility” that the UK will fail to broker a trade deal with the EU as he urged the public to prepare for the end of the transition period.
The Prime Minister said the “deal on the table is really not at the moment right”, saying it would leave the UK vulnerable to sanctions or tariffs if it did not follow the bloc’s new laws.
He said the current proposals would keep the nation “kind of locked in the EU’s orbit”, but insisted negotiators would “go the extra mile” to get a treaty in time for December 31.
But Mr Johnson said he told his Cabinet on Thursday evening to “get on and make those preparations” for a departure without a deal in place, or in an “Australian relationship” as he puts it.
“I do think we need to be very, very clear, there is now a strong possibility – a strong possibility – that we will have a solution that is much more like an Australian relationship with the EU than a Canadian relationship with the EU,” he said in an interview.
“That doesn’t mean it’s a bad thing, there are plenty of ways that we can turn that to the advantage of both sides in the conversation.
“But yes, now is the time for the public and businesses to get ready for January 1, because believe me there’s going to be change either way.”