In a major speech on Britain and the European Union, British Prime Minister Theresa May said Tuesday that EU leaders would be committing an act of “calamitous self-harm” if they tried to punish the UK for leaving the union in order to discourage other countries from taking the same path. “I must be clear. Britain wants to remain a good friend and neighbor to Europe,” but she stressed she would rather have no Brexit deal than accept a bad Brexit deal. She suggested the UK would slash taxes to poach investment if the EU failed to offer the UK a good trade deal.
May spoke after receiving an assurance from US president-elect Donald Trump that Britain after Brexit would be at the front of the queue for good trade deals with America, a reversal of Barack Obama’s threat to place the UK at the end of the line for trade.