PMQs live: Theresa May refuses to confirm if UK should stay in EU single market

David Davis had suggested it was 'very improbable' Britain would remain in the single market

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Indy Politics

Welcome to The Independent’s live coverage of the first Prime Minister's Questions since the end of the summer recess. 

Theresa May faced intense criticism over the Government’s strategy for exiting the European Union after she distanced herself from the suggestion, by Brexit Secretary David Davis, that remaining part of the EU’s single market is “very improbable”. A Number 10 spokesperson said Mr Davis’s claim was “his opinion” – and not policy.

Here at the latest updates: 



The strategy – or, lack of strategy – featured prominently at the first Prime Minister’s Questions after the summer recess (you can watch her first here).

She faced criticism from Angus Robertson, the SNPs leader in Westminster, who suggested she had failed to reveal whether she wants Britain to remain in Europe’s tariff-free zone – the single market. 

Ms May, however, repeated throughout PMQs, and in her G20 summit statement, that she would not reveal her hand before the negotiations had started with member states. She said doing so would be the best way to get the worst deal. Mr Robertson also claimed that so far the Government had only come up with "waffle" about its plan for Brexit. 

Mrs May said: "What I want for the UK is that we put into practice the vote that was taken by the people of the UK to leave the EU, that we get the right deal for the trade in goods and services with the EU in a new relationship that we will be building with them and that we also introduce control of the movement of people from the European Union into the UK."

Mrs May insisted that "we are respecting the views of the British people" rather than attempting to row back from Brexit. She added: "We will be seizing the opportunities that leaving the EU now gives us to forge a new role for the UK in the world".