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etvfutures.com June 26, 2017


Brexit talks: Key issues looming over the historic Britain-EU negotiations

19 June 2017, 02:40 | Cesar Cruz

Brexit talks: Key issues looming over the historic Britain-EU negotiations

Brexit talks: Key issues looming over the historic Britain-EU negotiations

"This is a deal that when finally agreed will matter fundamentally for the UK economy, for UK companies and for citizens of the UK".

Such is the collapse of May's authority that her entire Brexit strategy is being picked apart in public by her ministers, her lawmakers and her allies on the eve of formal negotiations which begin in Brussels on Monday at 0900 GMT.

"As we set out in the Article 50 letter, our view is that withdrawal agreement and terms of the future relationship must be agreed alongside each other".

The aim is to get European Union leaders to agree at a summit in October that there is "sufficient progress" on the divorce to move on to future ties.

Britain's negotiations with the European Union over its exit from the bloc begin on Monday and stand to be complicated by the surprise loss of Prime Minister Theresa May's parliamentary majority in a national election last week.

Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker was said to have reacted with incredulity at a suggestion by Theresa May when they met for dinner in Downing Street in April that an agreement could be wrapped up at the next European Union summit in Brussels at the end of June. Business leaders say the uncertainty means they are having to plan on the assumption that Britain leaves without a proper deal.

He said: "The key thing is we have a clear agenda".

The talks are set to continue every month throughout the summer.

The spokesman added that although some issues would be given early priority "the withdrawal and future are intimately linked".

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"We have always had the suspicion that the United Kingdom would not be prepared to safeguard the rights of these people, but that they would like to do less than that".

"My clear view, and I believe the view of the majority of people in Britain, is that we should prioritize protecting jobs, protecting economic growth, protecting prosperity as we enter those negotiations and take them forward", Hammond said. "We want to end the anxiety facing 4 million citizens".

Labour's Shadow Brexit secretary Sir Keir Starmer has written to David Davis urging him to "reset" the government's "belligerent and reckless" approach to leaving the EU.

The issue most likely to torpedo negotiations is Britain's bill for leaving the bloc.

Arriving at a meeting of European Union finance ministers in Luxembourg on Thursday, Mr Hammond signalled his ongoing loyalty to the Remainer causes, telling his colleagues: "My clear view, and I believe the view of the majority of people in Britain, is we should prioritise protecting jobs, protecting economic growth and protecting prosperity".

Ahead of talks kicking off tomorrow in Brussels, Philip Hammond said he felt the build up to discussions represented "the most egregious pre-negotiation process I've seen for a while".

But EU officials are sceptical that May's position has changed, just as they are doubtful about the feasibility of either option.

And the source told the BBC that it was understood the talks would broadly follow the EU's preferred sequence, dealing with issues of citizens' rights and a framework for calculating outstanding financial liabilities before moving on, possibly later in the year, to deal with the UK's future relationship with the EU.



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