Thursday, 17 October, 2019

EU Approves Guidelines for Post-Brexit Trade Talks with UK

Brexit news- Michel Barnier and David Davis GETTY•BBCBrexit news David Davis revealed Britain could still refuse to pay the divorce bill
Russell Knight | 24 March, 2018, 11:03

The 27 leaders meeting in Brussels adopted negotiating guidelines for talks on the future relationship with Britain and approved a deal for a 21-month transition period.

However, UK negotiators will be able to set up and ratify free trade deals with non-EU countries during the period.

"I believe there is a new dynamic now in the negotiations".

Since having to lower what her officials say were unreasonably high expectations among some Brexit supporters for the transition deal, or in her words an implementation period, May is trying to manage hopes for the final deal.

"I believe we are approaching this with a spirit of co-operation, a spirit of opportunity for the future as well, and we will now be sitting down and determining those workable solutions for Northern Ireland, but also for our future security partnership and economic partnership".

This agreement was described as a "decisive step" in the Brexit negotiations by Mr. Michel Barnier, the European Union negotiator, and has been hailed in the British press as a critical milestone for businesses.

European Council president Donald Tusk told reporters that EU leaders will assess at their June summit if the Irish issue is resolved.

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Britain may negotiate trade agreements with other countries after it officially leaves the bloc at midnight on March 29, 2019, but no pact can enter into force without European Union permission before the end of December 2020, after a post-Brexit transition.

How to resolve the border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland if the United Kingdom leaves the EU's customs union remains the biggest unsolved issue in negotiations.

The Taoiseach said: "The UK has chose to leave the EU".

The next phase of Brexit talks will focus heavily on Ireland and on Mrs May's promise to agree a "backstop" plan to ensure that there will be no reintroduction of a hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic. The EU allowed Britain to begin signing its own trade deals during the transition period.

Given the recent outrage expressed by some Brexiteers in relation to the continuation of the Common Fisheries Policy during the implementation period, one obvious flashpoint will be the European Union demand that "existing reciprocal access to fishing waters and resources" should remain on current terms.

But she said what was needed was a permanent exemption, given the "huge importance" of the industry to the British economy.

"If we can have an agreement on the terms backstop or an alternative to the backstop before June, that's something we would very much welcome", Irish prime minister Leo Varadkar said after the summit.

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