Germany: no punishment for UK, but EU exit good for no one

Germany: no punishment for UK, but EU exit good for no one”

The Brexit talks officially start today, (June 19 2017) with the UK Brexit Secretary David Davis meeting the chief EU negotiator Michel Barnier at the European Commission's Berlaymont headquarters.

The sensitive issue has been thrown into further doubt by May's efforts to seek a deal with Northern Ireland's ultra-conservative Democratic Unionist Party to stay in power after the British election.

Before the election, May proposed a clean break from the European Union: leaving its single market, which enshrines free movement of people, goods, services and capital, and proposing limits on immigration and a bespoke customs deal with the EU. However they were delayed to allow for the United Kingdom general election.

October 2018 Mr Barnier hopes to be able to conclude withdrawal negotiations around this point, in order to allow time for them to be ratified before the end of the two-year Article 50 deadline.

The most important opportunity to develop some personal chemistry between Barnier and Davis is likely to come during a 15-minute one-on-one meeting around noon, before they are joined by a couple of officials each for a private lunch.

How the negotiations progress will be monitored closely by investors and business leaders. In any case, European Union officials say, London no longer seems sure of what trade arrangements it will ask for.

While Britain's economy has shown unexpected resilience since the Brexit vote, there are signs of weakness.

This is despite a recent YouGov poll showing support for leaving the European Union as high as 70 per cent.

"In testing times like these we are reminded of the values and resolve we share with our closest allies in Europe", he said, referring to the latest reported terror attack overnight in London and the loss of lives in forest fires in Portugal. A deal like no other in history.

Davis said Prime Minister May will also set out at an EU summit on Thursday her proposals for the rights of the three million EU nationals living in Britain, and one million Britons in the EU, with the British government to publish a detailed offer next Monday. The language has changed from "Brexit means Brexit", to a "Red, White and Blue Brexit", "No deal is better than a bad deal" to a more measured post-election "open Brexit", to "no deal would be a very, very bad outcome for Britain".

He said he wanted post-Brexit trade with the European Union that was not just free from tariffs but also delays and bureaucracy.

In a sign of the progress that has been made, Mr Davis said the Prime Minister would brief fellow European Union leaders at a summit on Thursday on the UK's approach to the rights of expatriate citizens, which will be set out in detail in a paper on Monday.

Failure to strike a deal before Britain automatically leaves the bloc on 29 March 2019, risks inflicting sweeping tariffs and uncertainty on both economies. But Hammond said transitional arrangements would be necessary, to give business greater certainty.

Liberal Democrat Layla Moran, who beat Nicola Blackwood to take the seat by 816 votes, was speaking ahead of the talks and nearly one year after the referendum vote to leave the EU. The vote followed decades of mounting scepticism toward a project initially based on free trade, and which became a lightning rod for complaints over rising immigration and bureaucracy.

"As David Davis boards the plane to negotiate Brexit on behalf of the Government, it is unclear what the Government's position actually is".

Senior Cabinet figures have refused to say how long they expect the Prime Minister to remain in No 10 amid claims that successors are being lined up in readiness for a swift leadership campaign.

In carefully choreographed talks that even saw the two men exchange mountaineering gifts, they agreed to discuss divorce issues before negotiations on a future trade deal can start. "But we want to keep the door open for the British".

After the initial shock of last year's Brexit vote, the bloc at 27 appears to have steadied in recent months and got a real boost with the election of new French President Emmanuel Macron in May.

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