The Queen appointed Boris Johnson as the 14th Prime Minister of her reign on Wednesday. Johnson was chosen as the new leader of the Conservative Party by members earlier this week and has already formed his new Cabinet.
Boris Johnson, giving his first speech to Parliament at Prime Minister, said he was ready to negotiate “in good faith” with the European Union on Brexit.
But he said no country “with self-respect” could accept the “Irish backstop” and he said this had to be abolished before the UK could accept a deal with Europe.
He said: “I don’t accept that they can only be solved by part of the UK remaining in the single market or the customs union….but I am ready to meet and talk with the European Commission whenever and wherever.”
Mr Johnson said: “I’d much prefer to leave the EU with a deal and I will work flat out to make it happen.”
The Prime Minister said: “Our mission is to deliver Brexit on 31 October, to re-energise the UK and to make it the greatest place on Earth.”
He said he intended to invest in road and rail infrastructure, broadband and the new 5G network, to make the whole of the UK productive, not just London and the South East of England.
“We will make sure no town is left behind…and our children will lead longer, healthier and happier lives,” Mr Johnson said.
Mr Johnson said: “Too many people in this country feel they have been told repeatedly what we cannot do…we have been told to accept mediocrity and managed decline. Time and again the British people have chosen to innovate. We are a country bursting with ideas.”
He said Britain would become a nation of electric cars and even electric planes.
Earlier Mr Johnson paid tribute to Theresa May who, he said, had left behind a “great legacy”.
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said people “do not trust” the new prime minister and he urged Mr Johnson to come up with proper funding for the police, for schools and hospitals.
Mr Corbyn also called on Mr Johnson to rule out a “no deal Brexit” which he said would be “economic lunacy”.
Mr Corbyn also referred to Mr Johnson as “Britain’s Trump” and called on him to promise the National Health Service would not be sold to US healthcare companies.