No progress in trade negotiations after Britain leaves the European Union

The chief negotiator of the European Union on Britain’s exit from the bloc (Brexit) announced today, Monday, that no substantial progress has been made in trade negotiations with Britain at the beginning of this week, diplomats said. In the European Union, the German news agency (dpa), despite severe time pressure before the deadline at the end of the year.

Chief negotiator Michel Barnier told the EU ambassadors that the main points of contention remained fair competition between companies, fisheries and governance issues.

After Barnier and his British counterpart David Frost called for a halt to negotiations on Friday due to lack of progress, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson were directed to continue their talks in Brussels.

Media reports said on Sunday evening that common ground on the fisheries issue was close, but both sides immediately denied this.

France has threatened to veto a potential trade deal if the interests of its fishermen are not adequately respected.

Negotiations are set to continue on Monday, and von der Leyen and Johnson will make an assessment in a phone call in the evening.

Separately, a joint committee will discuss the implementation of the withdrawal agreement on Monday.

Britain formally left the European Union at the end of last January, but it remained in the single market and the customs union for the bloc until the end of the year. If there is no agreement by this deadline, the harshest tariffs and cumbersome customs procedures will be re-imposed.

 

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