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UK PM to giver parliament another chance to vote on Brexit deal

Italy is in recession while factory output in Germany has slumped

However, other European Union agreements on equivalency in certain areas like agriculture and customs can not be replicated in their entirety at this stage, said a government statement.

However, many United States banks are unfazed by the Norway model in which the UK would remain in the European Economic Area free-trade zone, because they already essentially see themselves as rule-takers, the people said.

But a study published early a year ago by research firm Cambridge Econometrics estimated that a total of 500,000 British jobs would be at risk if there is no deal.

Switzerland is the UK's 7th largest export market, 3rd largest non-EU market, 8th largest foreign direct investor and 10th top destination for United Kingdom outward direct investment.

The new trade deal will come into effect after the end of the Brexit transition period. The UK government has dropped its initial demand that they retain easy access to the single market.

Opponents of a no-deal Brexit inside her cabinet and on the Tory backbenches want to hear confirmation from the prime minister that any motion she tables then will be amendable.

However, one company representative present said they felt left "high and dry", adding that no real advice could be given because "they haven't got a clue what is going to happen".

In the event of a no-deal Brexit, these would need to be completed by 29 March, an ambition that many in British business now believe to be nearly impossible.

Switzerland meanwhile is Britain's fifth biggest export partner outside the EU.

The prime minister wrote a conciliatory letter to opposition Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn, after he proposed setting her a new deadline of February 26 for winning MPs' backing for a final exit deal.

The deal will also apply to Liechtenstein - represented by foreign minister Aurelia Frick - under the Swiss-Liechtenstein Customs Union.

The deal reflects Switzerland's "mind the gap" strategy of ensuring seamless trade ties with Britain, regardless of whether London is able to strike and approve a formal exit agreement with Brussels by March 29, the date it is scheduled to leave. He says May's agreement can achieve "a great deal of what Jeremy Corbyn is interested in without taking away that option of having other trade deals".

Since January, when her Brexit deal - the result of two years of haggling with the European Union - was emphatically rejected by parliament, drawing the scorn of both pro-EU lawmakers and Brexiters, May has dusted it down and plans to offer it up again for a vote. "Tonight I will repeat the EU's positions".

The head of business lobby group the Confederation of British Industry warned that the chances of Britain leaving the European Union next month without a deal have increased and the country has now entered "the emergency zone".