PM and EU chief ‘agree significance of Brexit deal’

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Reuters

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Boris Johnson and Ursula von der Leyen spoke through video convention on Saturday

Prime Minister Boris Johnson and EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen have “agreed the significance” of discovering a post-Brexit commerce deal, Downing Street has mentioned.

They agreed progress has been made in talks between the EU and UK however “important gaps” stay, No 10 mentioned.

Both have instructed their chief negotiators to “work intensively” so as to attempt to bridge these gaps.

Negotiations between the UK and EU broke up on Friday with out settlement.

Both sides are calling on the opposite to compromise on key points, together with fishing and authorities subsidies.

Mr Johnson and Mrs von der Leyen spoke throughout a telephone name on Saturday and agreed to talk regularly.

A Downing Street spokesperson mentioned the 2 had agreed on the significance of discovering an settlement “as a robust foundation for a strategic EU-UK relationship in future.”

The UK’s chief negotiator, Lord Frost, tweeted that work to resolve variations between the UK and EU “begins as quickly as we are able to subsequent week”.

Speaking earlier, whereas on a go to to Leeds, Mr Johnson mentioned he desires a deal like one struck between the EU and Canada, however reiterated the UK was prepared ought to it have to go away and not using a deal.

“We’re resolved on both course, we’re ready for both course and we’ll make it work however it’s very a lot as much as our mates and companions,” Mr Johnson mentioned.

It comes after Mrs von der Leyen referred to as for talks to “intensify”, as either side set an October deadline to settle their variations.

The significance of in the present day’s name between Boris Johnson and the top of the EU fee is that either side have agreed to maintain speaking.

Although formal negotiations ended yesterday with out settlement, as a substitute of throwing within the sponge – as Boris Johnson would put it – talks will now intensify.

But a Downing Street assertion made clear that whereas there are notable (and well-known) variations over fishing rights and subsidies to companies, these aren’t the one points that should be solved.

There is the potential to compromise – for instance, on phasing in new fishing preparations and on having state help provisions just like different free commerce agreements – however it’s not clear the political willingness is but there on either side.

The EU has to fulfill the calls for of 27 completely different states.

And Boris Johnson has to persuade Brexit-supporting backbenchers that he hasn’t bought out.

Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab aimed to reassure them by stating in the present day that the times of being “held over a barrel” by Brussels are lengthy gone.

Asked about potential compromises that could possibly be made, Mr Johnson mentioned: “The stability of commerce is overwhelmingly on the aspect of the EU within the sense that they export far more to us than we do to them, definitely in manufacturing items, and so we expect there’s a large alternative for either side to do effectively.”

He identified that Canada is “a way away” however had managed to strike a cope with the EU whereas the UK remained the bloc’s largest buying and selling accomplice.

But he acknowledged a no-deal final result the place the UK would observe primarily World Trade Organization guidelines on commerce with the EU was doable and would “work very effectively” – describing it as an Australia-style arrangement.

Speaking on the digital Conservative Party convention, Cabinet Office minister Michael Gove mentioned the talks with the EU had been “a tricky course of” however “with goodwill we should always be capable to get a deal”.

He added: “Recognising that we share the identical excessive environmental and workforce requirements as they do, however we need to do issues in our personal means, is a bit troublesome for them and likewise there may be the very vexed challenge to do with fisheries.”

However, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab advised the convention the “days of being held over a barrel by Brussels are lengthy gone”, as he burdened any commerce deal have to be “honest”.

The EU wants access to UK fishing grounds for its boats and says reaching a “honest deal” is a pre-condition of a deal, whereas the UK says they need to be “at the start for British boats”.

Competition guidelines

The prime minister has set the deadline of the EU Council assembly on 15 October for securing a deal.

After six months of commerce talks with the EU, Lord Frost has claimed the outlines of an settlement are seen, however he warned that, with out additional compromise from the EU, variations over the contentious subject of fishing could also be unattainable to bridge.

He described the ultimate spherical of negotiations as “constructive” however “acquainted variations stay”.

On fishing, the hole was “sadly very massive” and he referred to as for the EU to “transfer additional earlier than an understanding might be reached” on state help.

His EU counterpart, Michel Barnier, agreed the negotiations had been performed in a “constructive and respectful ambiance”, with some “constructive new developments on some matters” – akin to aviation security and police co-operation.

But he mentioned there was “a scarcity of progress on some necessary matters”, akin to local weather change commitments, “in addition to persistent severe divergences on issues of main significance for the European Union”, together with state help and fishing.

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PA Media

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The UK’s chief negotiator, Lord David Frost

The UK formally left the EU in January, however entered a transition interval – the place the UK has saved to EU buying and selling guidelines and remained inside its customs union and single market – to permit the 2 sides to barter a commerce deal.

Formal talks started in March and continued all through the pandemic, however there have been considerations over whether or not a plan can be agreed earlier than that interval runs out on 31 December.

Issues which have change into specific sticking factors between negotiators are state help – the place governments give monetary help to companies – and fishing guidelines.

The EU has mentioned a deal have to be reached earlier than the top of October to permit it to be signed off by the member states earlier than the top of the 12 months, whereas Mr Johnson has mentioned either side ought to “transfer on” if settlement was not reached by the center of the month.

If a deal is just not completed, the UK will go on to commerce with the bloc on World Trade Organization guidelines.

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