Ministers hope position paper will avoid disruption by giving businesses time to gear up for a new customs regime

Ministers hope to strike a temporary deal with the European Union to retain the key benefits of the customs union for an interim period after Brexit, to avoid cross-border commerce grinding to a halt.

The government will use a position paper published on Tuesday to reveal that, for a brief period, it will seek a deal allowing the transit of goods across borders to continue as now – perhaps by striking a “temporary customs union”.

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