Brexit: The Attitude of London is “Uncompromising and Unrealistic”, says Jean-Yves Le Drian

General News
Jean-Yves Le Drian, in Brussels, January 10, 2020.

NEGOTIATIONS: UK and EU blame each other for the stalling of the Brexit negotiations on this future relationship

The negotiations stalled. Discussions on the future relationship between the European Union and the United Kingdom after Brexit are blocked because of “the intransigence and unrealism of London”, estimated the French Minister of Foreign Affairs, Jean-Yves Le Drian, this Monday.

The “negotiations are not progressing because of the intransigent and quite frankly unrealistic attitude of the United Kingdom”, lamented the minister during a speech to the ambassadors of France in Europe, alongside his German counterpart Heiko Maas.

The conditions of the competition at issue

The United Kingdom and the European Union mutually reject the responsibility of blocking negotiations on this future relationship, which must lead to an agreement before December 31st, failing which the only rules of the World Trade Organization (WTO), with their High customs duties and their extensive customs controls, would apply to trade relations between these partners. What weakens economies already hit hard by the pandemic.

The discussions stumble in particular on the conditions of competition, the EU refusing to see a deregulated economy appear at its doorstep. To illustrate these deep differences in this area, Michel Barnier took the example of road transport, asserting that the British did not want certain rules to apply to their drivers when they travel on the European continent. Negotiations are due to resume on September 7 in London.

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