The EU has its own clear favourite in the Tory leadership contest. Mr Sunak is the ideal choice for Brexit negotiators in Brussels due to his softer stance on the Northern Ireland Protocol.
Liz Truss, who is currently leading in polls among the Tory membership, has wiped away goodwill between the bloc and the UK with her decision to put forward legislation that would unilaterally rip up parts of the much-maligned Brexit deal.
Mr Sunak is known to have argued during his time in Cabinet against escalating to a fight with the EU by triggering Article 16 of the Protocol.
The former Chancellor has taken a more pragmatic approach to relations with Brussels and has said he would like to avoid an all-out confrontation with the bloc over the protocol and attempt to resolve issues through further negotiations.
Nathalie Loiseau, France’s former Europe minister, observed: “There is one thing Liz Truss doesn’t seem to understand and that is the EU.”
FOLLOW BELOW FOR UPDATES…