Monday, 18 December, 2017

Britain in 'good position' in Brexit talks: PM May's spokeswoman

The Latest: UK's May looks to post-Brexit ties with Japan Britain in 'good position' in Brexit talks: PM May's spokeswoman
Christy Curtis | 30 August, 2017, 01:03

The European Commission's chief negotiator also said that this issue must be clarified before negotiations move on to the status of Northern Ireland, which both parties have linked to the future border and customs relationship.

And a UK Government source indicated that Mr Davis will warn Brussels not to "drag its feet" in discussions which must be completed in time for the deadline of March 2019. Why would it do this? The U.K. camp believes negotiations could progress if Barnier's team didn't follow its mandate to the letter. "But none of those papers are in fact satisfactory".

'So there is still an enormous amount of issues which remain to be settled.

On Ireland, the United Kingdom has said it would not seek a 'hard border'.

The leader of the Opposition says that there is now an "onus on all Government's across Europe" to prevent a hard Brexit from occurring and to "look at all options that would ensure" Britain's continued membership of the customs union during an extended transitional period.

Michel Barnier made the comments at a media briefing before the third round of discussions begin in Brussels.

The British government favours a different sequencing of negotiations. Although it was understood negotiations would begin on Monday, most arrived by Eurostar this morning.

UK Brexit secretary David Davis has called for "flexibility and imagination" in the talks.

In an open statement to reporters, Barnier said, "To be honest, I'm concerned".

As the third round of talks began in Brussels on Monday, Michel Barnier said he was concerned that "time is passing quickly", noting the lack of progress made after nearly five months of a two-year negotiation.

October is a key date as it would be the moment European Union leaders could decide, at a scheduled summit at the end of the month, whether "sufficient progress" has been made. We must start negotiating seriously.

Mr Starmer said entrance restrictions for immigration "would be dealt with in the final agreement". They cover issues including how the Luxembourg-based European Court of Justice will no longer have "direct" jurisdiction over British laws, data protection and confidentiality of documents.

He said it was not possible for progress to be made without enough detail about the UK's plans.

The EU wants Britain to agree to the terms of its departure first, in particular on citizens' rights, a financial settlement on what Britain owes the bloc, and the Irish border issue.

Tom Parker from the British Chamber of Commerce in Brussels told Sky News that this was a make or break week.

Davis has repeatedly called this timetable "inflexible" and has called on the European Union to show "imagination" about the organization of the talks.

After the transitional period, Sir Keir said, the new relationship with the EU would "retain the benefits of the customs union and the single market", but how that would be achieved "is secondary to the outcome".

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