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Britain's chief Brexit negotiator has privately voiced fears that the UK may be tied to European subsidies policy through the back door. Talks between David Frost and Michel Barnier, his EU counterpart, this week will try to rescue the negotiations amid growing pessimism in European capitals. Mr Frost will tell Mr Barnier that the prime minister is ready to pull the plug on talks unless the EU drops a demand that Britain commit itself to a specific subsidy policy. After the EU dropped demands for Britain to be fully aligned on competition rules, policed by judges in Luxembourg, Mr Frost fears that any specifics will in effect tie Britain to EU rules. "We think the right thing to focus on is how we solve disputes and solve transparency, not to tie in to continuity with something that looks like the EU's policy," a source close to the talks said.

MNI London Bureau | +44 0203-865-3809 | anthony.barton@marketnews.com