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Clegg: Liam Fox's view of trade outside EU is 'fantasy'

Liam Fox's insistence that Britain can maintain free trade with the European Union post-Brexit is a "work of fantasy", Nick Clegg has said.

The former deputy prime minister warned that instead businesses would face a "deluge of bureaucracy and paperwork".

International Trade Secretary Dr Fox had said that trade with the EU can be "at least as free" as it is now, and that the UK would work with the World Trade Organisation on "taking an axe to red tape across borders".

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Liam Fox: 'I do not regret standing for leadership'

Dr Liam Fox, who was eliminated from the Tory leadership contest today after receiving just 16 votes from his Conservative MP colleagues, has said he does "not regret standing".

Liam Fox says he does not regret standing for party leadership Credit: PA

I am very grateful to those colleagues who supported me in the ballot today.

Naturally, I am disappointed not to progress further but I do not regret standing in this contest. I felt it was vital to stress the importance of national security in this debate and the need for a clear path to our exit from the European Union. I hope I have achieved both these objectives.

I have also sought to stress the need for experience as the successful candidate will have to take up the reins of government in less than 9 weeks.

– Dr Liam Fox MP

Tory leadership candidate Liam Fox pencils in Brexit date

Liam Fox said the recent EU referendum has 'changed all the rules'. Credit: PA

Tory leadership candidate Liam Fox has pencilled in January 1, 2019 as a potential date for Britain officially leaving the European Union.

In an interview with the Sunday Telegraph, the Leave campaigner said the "referendum changed all the rules," calling it an "earthquake in our political system".

Dr Fox also said that if he becomes prime minister he would like to see an increase in defence spending and the size of the Navy.

We need to spend money on our national security because you need to buy insurance in a dangerous world," he told the paper.

"I would want to see an increase in defence spending as we saw an increase in our economy, for me that would be a priority.

"In particular I would like to see an increase in the size of the Navy and our cyber capability."

The former defence secretary also said he would also create a new department for trade and foreign affairs under his administration.

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