Britain will not try to 'cherry pick' in Brexit talks, says May

Britain's permanent representative to the European Union Tim Barrow delivers British Prime Minister Theresa May's Brexit letter in notice of the UK's intention to leave the bloc under Article 50 of the EU's Lisbon Treaty to EU Council President Donald Tusk in Brussels, Belgium March 29, 2017. REUTERS/Yves Herman

LONDON (Reuters) - Prime Minister Theresa May said on Wednesday she would not try to “cherry pick” parts of European Union membership as Britain leaves the bloc, saying she respected its four freedoms.

In a sign that May wants to foster goodwill in the talks, she wrote in a letter to European Council President Donald Tusk that she knew there would be consequences from Brexit and Britain would lose influence over the rules that govern the European economy.

“We understand and respect your position that the four freedoms of the single market are indivisible and there can be no ‘cherry picking’,” she said in the letter.

“We also know that UK companies will, as they trade within the EU, have to align with rules agreed by institutions of which we are no longer a part – just as UK companies do in other overseas markets.”

Reporting by Elizabeth Piper, editing by Estelle Shirbon