In an angry tirade against the Chequers proposal, Barnier has slammed the UK for presenting an ‘unworkable’ solution to leaving the UK.

Mr Barnier told German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung: “If we let the British pick the cherries out of our rules, that would have serious consequences.

That would be the end of the single market and the European project.”

Mr Barnier also tried to hep more pressure on Mrs May by saying no extensions to the troubled talks are needed, adding: “We don’t need more time.

“We know that the situation in the United Kingdom is complicated.”

No special deals

Reported in The Times:

Europe’s chief Brexit negotiator has dismissed Theresa May’s Chequers proposals and criticised her plan to avoid a hard border in Northern Ireland as “an invitation to fraud”.

Michel Barnier said that the UK would not be granted any special economic relationship with the EU as it would unravel the single market and the entire “European project”.

The remarks amount to an ultimatum that Britain must either choose a Canadian-style free trade agreement or remain in the customs union or common market, which would mean being tightly bound by European regulation.

Mrs May’s Chequers strategy, which would involve British officials collecting tolls on behalf of Brussels, has now run into “unanimous” opposition from the 27 EU member states, according to the Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung. Mr Barnier insisted that any British “cherry-picking” would be the ruin of the EU because other wayward member states would clamour for similar deals.