(Bloomberg) -- Theresa May is seeking to buy time to renegotiate her Brexit agreement with the European Union, as her opponents in Parliament plot to take control to stop the U.K. plunging out of the bloc with no deal.

Key Developments:

  • Government says it’s “not considering” a customs union with EU, a key demand of opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn
  • May brings forward Brexit statement to Parliament to Tuesday from Wednesday
  • Brexit Secretary Steve Barclay meets EU’s chief negotiator Michel Barnier in Strasbourg

May ‘Not Considering’ Corbyn Customs Demand (12 p.m.)

In her letter to Jeremy Corbyn over the weekend, Theresa May stopped short of fully rejecting the Labour leader’s demand for the U.K. to stay in a post-Brexit customs union with the EU. But her spokesman, James Slack, moved quickly on Monday to dispel talk there may be some wiggle room on the issue.

“We’re not considering Jeremy Corbyn’s customs proposals, we’re not considering any proposals to remain in a customs union,” Slack told reporters in London. “We must have our own independent trade policy.”

It’s another indication that while May’s letter avoided the usual combative tone she takes typically takes with Corbyn, it’s likely to be more of a delaying tactic than any real sense she’s considering a compromise with him.

Slack also told reporters May’s statement to Parliament on Brexit has been brought forward to Tuesday from Wednesday.

One effect of that will be lawmakers on both sides of the House having more time between hearing May and deciding what amendments to propose on the government’s Brexit new motion -- which is has not been published -- ahead of the votes on Thursday.


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To contact the reporters on this story: Robert Hutton in London at rhutton1@bloomberg.net;Kitty Donaldson in London at kdonaldson1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Emma Ross-Thomas at erossthomas@bloomberg.net, Stuart Biggs

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