Boris must ensure ONE thing in EU talks… but it’s exactly what 'Merkel is ...

BORIS JOHNSON must ensure "the essence of the economic case for Brexit" is secured in negotiations with Brussels, despite EU demands to accept their "level playing field", according to a senior City economist.

PUBLISHED: 19:43, Mon, Oct 26, 2020 | UPDATED: 19:49, Mon, Oct 26, 2020

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The level playing field remains one of the three major obstacles to a deal alongside fishing rights and governance arrangements for any agreement. But economist Roger Bootle said not accepting the level playing field was the very "essence" of the economic case for Brexit.

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This is the essence of the economic case for Brexit

Roger Bootle

He said the term was simply EU-speak for for "being tied into Brussels’ rules and regulations".

And he said potential gains from Brexit would come when the UK started doing business under rules and regulations that differ from the EU’s.

He said: "Far from being an arcane sideshow, this is the essence of the economic case for Brexit.

"Of course, it will be advantageous not to have to lob tribute across the channel each year to fund our lords and masters.

Boris JohnsonBoris Johnson has been urged to reject EU 'level playing field' demands (Image: GETTY)

"Equally, we stand to gain from operating an independent trade policy, fashioned according to the UK’s interests.

"But the really big potential gains from Brexit derive from operating rules and regulations different from the EU’s."

Mr Bootle, chairman of independent macroeconomic research consultancy Capital Economics, said this was why EU leaders were so keen for the UK to accept the level playing field.

He said: "This is precisely why so many on the continent, including Angela Merkel, are anxious about Brexit.

"They are worried about us becoming a super-competitor."

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Boris JohnsonPrime Minister Boris Johnson leaves Downing Street (Image: PA)

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