Theresa May's plans for post-Brexit 'customs partnership' is 'killed' by ministers

UK's May facing Brexiteer revolt over customs union

But he insisted it was "inconceivable that I would support a vote of no confidence" in Mrs May's government.

Now the Brexit Secretary has told the House of Lords EU Committee: "The Commission did push back on both".

The Guardian understands that neither the customs union, nor Brexit more generally, was brought up at Tuesday's meeting of the full cabinet.

During his visit to Dundalk on Monday, the EU's chief negotiator Michel Barnier said that while June was a "stepping stone", there was a "real risk" to the negotiations if there was no progress on the backstop.

May's decision to leave the EU's customs union, which sets tariffs for goods imported into the bloc, has become one of the main flashpoints in the Brexit debate in Britain, pitting companies and pro-EU campaigners against a vocal group of hardline eurosceptic lawmakers.

The Irish border has been a sticking point for the Brexit negotiations, with the European Union stating that a solution needs to be found to avoid any hard border before a final deal is signed.

At the end of the meeting, that chamber resolved to call on the government to "include as an objective in negotiations on the future relationship between the United Kingdom and the EU the establishment of an effective customs union between the two territories".

Critics - including many leading backers of Brexit - say it is unworkable, and would not amount to a clean break with the EU.

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European Union and Irish sources say that only Option C can be enshrined in the treaty.

The report reiterates previous warnings to May's government that any United States administration - particularly one led by President Trump - will be keen for Britain to lower its standards in areas like agriculture.

"If truth be told, I would consider it not a success if we fell back on Option C".

The report says the United Kingdom government has failed to produce sufficient research into the pros and cons of a trade deal with the US. "But we are aiming to do it by October".

Mr Davis warned the United Kingdom could be left "in a sort of limbo" if it is not able to complete a future relationship deal with the European Union by the end of the transition period in December 2020.

Mr Davis stressed that the Government regards the transition period ending in December 2020 as a time for implementation of the changes needed to prepare for the changed relationship with the EU.

He added: "It doesn't matter really what it is, a camera, a pole, a building, whatever..."

The alternative to this is a speeded-up customs arrangement at the border, where all the customs forms would be filled in online, customs checks would be carried out at the trader's own premises rather than at the border, and there would be cameras and automated number plate recognition. "So, there's a variety of mechanisms, but they don't require border infrastructure".

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