Brexit negotiations are complex but there is hope. German Chancellor Angela Merkel believes on Wednesday that there is “still a chance to reach an agreement” on the UK’s exit from the European Union (EU) and EU member states.
A possible agreement “must preserve the integrity of the internal market” of the EU, warned the lower house of parliament the head of the German government, whose country presides over the EU until the end of the year . “There is still a chance to come to an agreement. I don’t know if we’ll be successful by tomorrow (Thursday), I can not promise, but we continue to work on it, ”she says.
The quest for “fair conditions”
“We continue to work, but we are also ready to be faced with conditions that we will not be able to accept”, also warns Angela Merkel. “We must have a level playing field, not only for today, but also for tomorrow and the day after,” she insists, citing the sensitive issues of fishing quotas and competition, which must not be ” unfair ”.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen meet in Brussels (Belgium) on Wednesday, on the eve of a European summit of the 27 EU member countries, to try to unblock post-Brexit negotiations. What appears to be a last-ditch meeting comes three weeks before the final split between London, the British capital, and the European Union after months of talks without progress on the angry issues and the increased threat of a failure with serious economic consequences.
The British and Europeans have always stumbled over the same three subjects since March: European access to British waters, how to settle disputes in the future agreement and the guarantees demanded by the EU in London in terms of competition in exchange for a access without customs duties or quotas to the mainland market.
The tone of the last days gives little hope. In the absence of an agreement, it is by default the rules of the World Trade Organization that would apply as well as the traditional customs duties between States.
Boris Johnson: “The UK left the EU in order to exercise democratic control”
The EU will never sacrifice ” (his) future ”to conclude a post-Brexit agreement at the cost of concessions that would weaken its single market, warned the European negotiator Michel Barnier. “Our friends must understand that the UK left the EU in order to exercise democratic control. We are still far from it, ”warned Boris Johnson.
During a telephone interview on Monday evening, Johnson and von der Leyen could only note that the conditions to finalize an agreement are still “not met”. The only note of optimism is an “agreement in principle” on customs arrangements specific to Northern Ireland, supposed to prevent the return of a border with the Republic of Ireland.
Original article by : www.leparisien.fr