According to the Politico website:
U.K. Brexit negotiators are developing a plan to solve the Irish border issue by keeping the whole of the U.K. aligned with a subset of the EU’s single market rules, according to British officials.
The proposal — which also involves a wholly new U.K.-EU customs arrangement — aims to break the deadlock over the border question as both sides embark on a four-week push to rewrite the EU’s contentious “backstop” plan for avoiding a hard Irish border.
Ther direction of travel here is obvious.
The moment the UK now discusses an issue with the EU they cave in.
So, give it a few weeks and the talk of a customs agreement will be about staying in the customs agreement.
And discussion on alignment with the single market will be about retaining membership of it.
And the EU will have it no other way, as they have always made clear.
May is playing a game of conceding in stages. This is the start of the next round.
Or so we can hope, largely because there is no other way out of this mess, and I am quite sure the UK negotiators know that.