1. ITV Report

Theresa May defends Brexit planning as she tells ITV News key analysis on trade 'isn't complete'

  • Watch key exchange between PM and ITV News Political Correspondent Romilly Weeks

Theresa May has defended the government's planning for Brexit talks as she confirmed to ITV News leaked key analysis that downplays future trade deals "isn't complete".

The prime minister said the leaked analysis, which appeared to undermine her stance on future immigration, was not finalised.

Mrs May - who also spoke out on her own negotiating ability after implied criticism from Donald Trump - addressed the issue on the final day of a three-day trade mission to China.

The document, which was prepared for the Department for Exiting the EU, predicts new trade deals will not cover the economic cost of curbing migration after Brexit.

But Mrs May told ITV News: "The analysis isn't complete, (it) doesn't even model the sort of relationship we want with the EU for the future."

When asked by ITV News Political Correspondent Romilly Weeks why the government was still waiting on key analysis, Mrs May said: "The negotiations have been in two stages.

"We haven't negotiated the future arrangement with the European Union. That's what we're now doing, that's what we're starting to do."

She added: "It's important that government looks at the analysis that is available."

The prime minister's leadership on Brexit was brought into question last week by the US president when he claimed he would have taken a tougher stance on negotiations with the EU.

Theresa May has responded to Donald Trump's claim he would have been a tougher negotiator on Brexit. Credit: AP

Mrs May addressed the criticism in an interview with ITV's Good Morning Britain, saying: "We have got the negotiating ability."

She added: "I had a very good meeting with Donald Trump when I was in Davos last week. We talked about trade between the United Kingdom and the United States."

Mrs May also hailed her trip to China as proof of the potential to boost British employment and prosperity, having overseen deals with China worth £9 billion.

"I've got businesses here who have been signing deals that mean there'll be more jobs for people back in the UK," she said.

"Coming out of the European Union, coming out of the Customs Union means we can do free trade deals with the rest of the world."