UK could walk away from trade talks with the EU
It could happen if progress isn't made by an assessment in June
Boris Johnson could walk away from trade talks with the European Union in June unless there is the "broad outline" of a deal.
The UK's guidelines for the negotiations, which cover trade and other aspects of the future relationship with Brussels, sets the deadline for progress against a backdrop of deep divisions between the two sides over issues including fish, state subsidies and standards.
The Government has set out its plans for the talks ahead of the first round of negotiations on Monday, making clear that it "will not negotiate any arrangements in which the UK does not have control of its own laws and political life".
It clearly states the UK's intention to rely on World Trade Organisation terms under an arrangement with the EU similar to Australia's if progress on a comprehensive deal cannot be made.
Whatever the outcome of the talks, businesses have been warned to expect friction at the border from January 1 because the UK will not extend the transition period and will therefore be leaving the EU's single market and customs union.
A high-level meeting to take stock of progress is scheduled for June, by which time it should be clear whether the Canada-style comprehensive free trade agreement sought by Mr Johnson is possible by the end of the year.Published: by Radio NewsHub