May is said to be ready to ditch one of her key demands in order to resolve the Irish border problem and clear a path to a deal, according to people familiar citied by Bloomberg.
The Irish border is the major sticking point blocking a deal.
“Until now, May has
insisted that a legal guarantee to
ensure no new border emerges on the island of Ireland should be
strictly limited in time. May and pro-Brexit politicians in her
Conservative party want an end date for the policy to avoid
delaying the U.K.’s departure and to ensure the country is free
from EU customs rules to strike its own trade deals around the
world,” the report says.
By bowing to the EU on this point, she risks a political fight domestically. She must have calculated that the EU wouldn’t bend and that her party won’t bring her down.
So if an agreement is reached — which suddenly sounds much more likely — the debate will shift to whether it can get through parliament or whether May can survive. The problem with the compromise is that it would leave open the possibility of the UK remaining in the customs union indefinitely.