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Johnson sets out areas of UK divergence after Brexit; hints at some EU alignment

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Johnson sets out areas of UK divergence after Brexit; hints at some EU alignment

British Foreign Minister Boris Johnson asserted that the U.K. should have a clean break from the EU as he laid out the areas where Britain could diverge from the bloc's rules, including in financial services and medical research, media reports said.

Johnson said the U.K. will need "a regulatory framework, scrupulous and moral, but not afraid of the new" for innovative financial services instruments and stem cell technology development, the Financial Times reported.

Other areas of Brexit divergence include fishing quotas, the banning of live animal transport, value-added tax rates on domestic fuel, and environmental impact assessments, according to the report.

But Johnson also said the U.K. may choose to maintain regulatory alignment with the EU for some products after Brexit, though it should not stay in perpetual congruence with the bloc, The Wall Street Journal, Reuters and Sky News reported.

Johnson said many businesses understand the need to accept some EU rules "for the purposes of supply chains," according to Sky News.

"When it comes to EU standards for washing machines or hairdryers or vacuum cleaners or whatever, it may very well make sense for us to remain in alignment as a matter of choice," Johnson was quoted as saying in the report. "But I don't think we should necessarily commit, as a matter of treaty, that forever and a day we are going to remain locked into permanent congruence with the EU," he added.