||<p>No such assurances have been sought from the EU, for a scenario where the UK leaves
the EU without a deal, as the Government remains committed to seeking an agreement.
The Government and the European Commission have been clear that our trading relationship
must comply with WTO rules. GATT Article XXIV is the provision which allows WTO members
to form free trade areas or customs unions, or to adopt an interim agreement necessary
for the formation of a customs union or of a free trade area. It relates solely to
trade in goods. Any preferential arrangement between the UK and EU under Article XXIV
- whether temporary or permanent - requires the mutual agreement of both parties.</p><p>