EU Ramps up Pressure on UK at New round of Brexit Talks

“We are getting closer to the UK’s withdrawal and I think that this moment should be a moment of clarity”.

He said there would be discussions on the transition, since the UK has asked for it, but that does not dispense with the necessity of “sufficient progress” on the other key matters which is essential to create an atmosphere of trust so as to build the future UK/EU relationship.

But neither side disguised continued frustrations: the European Union’s Michel Barnier dismissed talk of Britain diverging from EU rules during any post-Brexit transition 18 months from now; Brexit minister David Davis urged him to stop stalling talks on future trade relations if he wants London to settle its accounts.

In a press conference earlier in the day, Barnier warned however that discussions on the bill and future relationship should not be mixed up.

The Brexit Secretary said Theresa May’s speech in Florence on the strategy for quitting the bloc had set out concrete proposals and a breakthrough was now needed.

The Brexit secretary, David Davis, and the EU’s chief negotiator, Michel Barnier, have clashed over the UK’s exit bill and Britain’s request for a transition period after Theresa May’s Florence speech failed to unlock the negotiations stalemate.

“We do not want our European Union partners to worry they will pay more or receive less over the remainder of the current budget plan as a result of our decision to leave”, he said alongside Barnier.

Both pledges mean a step for the United Kingdom, which has so far lacked a position on the financial settlement and refused any ECJ participation in safeguarding citizens’ rights. It’s up to European Union leaders to decide whether talks can move from the divorce stage to the future relationship, and the first chance they have to do that is a mid-October summit.

Britain says all issues are intertwined and should be discussed together.

Chief EU Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier said he was “keen and eager” to hear how his British counterparts would translate May’s Brexit speech last week into concrete proposals.

French President Emmanuel Macron restated the EU’s position at the weekend, saying that “if those three points are not clarified, then we can not move forward on the rest”. But he said he had no mandate to discuss the two-year transition period that May has proposed to help ease Britain out of the EU.

The very public disagreement threatened to overshadow a mood of increased optimism in the aftermath of the Florence address, in which the PM also committed to a two-year transitional period on European Union membership terms.

“If the idea is that during this period they will still participate in the single market and the customs union and the policies of the single market then it is quite clear that all European regulations, enforcement, financial conditions, supervision, all of that has to be maintained during the self-same period without any exceptions”. “We are talking about extending European Union legislation for certain period of time, continue with things such budget, supervision, judicial control”, Barnier added.

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