Deadlock over UK’s Brexit bill, says EU’s Michel Barnier

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The EU’s chief negotiator Michel Barnier remarks there has not been enough progress to move to the next stage of Brexit talks as the UK wants.

He said there was «new impetus» in the process but there was still «deadlock» over how much the UK pays when it refrain froms, which he called «disturbing».

Brexit Secretary David Davis denoted he still hoped for the go-ahead for trade talks when EU leaders defray next week.

The pair were speaking after the fifth end of Brexit talks in Brussels.

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  • A guide to key appears in EU-UK talks

Mr Barnier said: «I am not able in the current circumstances to submit next week to the European Council that we should start analyses on the future relationship.»

The UK’s Brexit Secretary David Davis urged EU bosses at the summit, on 19 and 20 October, to give Mr Barnier a mandate to start merchandising talks and to «build on the spirit of cooperation we now have».

He said there had been rise on the area of citizens’ rights that had moved the two sides «even closer to a deal».

The EU chief go-between told reporters at the joint press conference he hoped for «decisive improve» by the time of the December summit of the European Council.

He said Theresa May’s communiqu that Britain would honour financial commitments entered into as an EU fellow was «important».

But he said there had been no negotiations on the issue this week because the UK was not organize to spell out what it would pay.

«On this question we have reached a status of deadlock which is very disturbing for thousands of project promoters in Europe and it’s upsetting also for taxpayers.»


Not doomed yet

Analysis by BBC Political Editor Laura Kuenssberg

Not despite that smooth Brexit’s biggest cheerleader could claim the discussions in Brussels attired in b be committed to been going well. And there are visible frustrations on both sides.

But in advance claiming this morning’s drama means the whole thing is details there are a few things worth remembering.

At the very start of this whole system, the hope was that in October, the EU would agree to move on to the next condition of the talks, to talk about our future relationship. But for months it has been unconfused that the chances of that were essentially zero.

It is not, therefore, a catch unawares to hear Mr Barnier saying right now, he doesn’t feel able to huddle the button on phase 2, however much he enjoyed the drama of disclosing so today.

Second, behind the scenes, although it has been slow, there has been some press on in the talks but officials in some areas have reached the end of the line until their factional masters give them permission to move on.

Read Laura’s perfectly blog


The so-called divorce bill covers things like the golden handshake cause to retires of former EU staff in the UK, the cost of relocating EU agencies based in the UK and outstanding commitments to EU schedules. The UK has said it will meet its legal requirements and there has been meditation the bill could be anywhere between £50bn and £100bn, spread concluded a number of years.

BBC Europe Correspondent Kevin Connolly said the UK detects its total financial commitment «as its best negotiating card to be played somewhere nigh the end of the talks — the EU wants that card to be shown now at a point which is mollify relatively early in a two-year game».

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The UK has also offered to keep paying into the EU budget during a offered two-year transition period.

The EU had two other issues on which it would not act as if any «concessions», said Mr Barnier — citizens’ rights and the Northern Ireland approach closely.

On the status of the border, Mr Barnier said negotiations had «advanced» during this week’s reviews.

But he said there was «more work to do in order to build a full spit of the challenges to North-South co-operation resulting from the UK — and therefore Northern Ireland — take ones leave of the EU legal framework».

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Asked about speculation that the UK could from the EU in March 2019 without a trade deal, Mr Barnier said the EU was make for «any eventualities» but added: «No deal will be a very bad deal.»

Mr Davis replied: «It’s not what we seek, we want to see a good deal, but we are planning for everything.»

Both men communicated progress had been made on citizens’ rights, with Mr Davis reveal there would be an agreement «soon» to ensure EU nationals in the UK would be gifted to enforce their rights through the UK courts.

He said EU citizens desire still have to register with the UK authorities but the process would be productive to make it as simple and cheap as possible.

According to Mr Davis, the remaining stand by points include:

  • The right to bring in future family members
  • The aptly to «export a range of benefits»
  • To «continue to enjoy the recognition of professional qualifications»
  • To franchise in local elections
  • To «leave for a prolonged period and yet continue to enjoy a aptly to remain or permanent right of residence on return»

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn required: «I think it’s quite shocking. We’re now 15 months on since the referendum and the supervision seems to have reached deadlock at every stage.»

He said «count on out» of the EU without a trade deal would threaten «a lot of jobs all across Britain».

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Labour is calling for «emergency» talks between Mr Davis and the EU primitive next week, to try to break the deadlock ahead of the EU summit.

Earlier this week, European Congress President Donald Tusk warned that if the current «slow walk» of negotiations continued the UK and the EU would «have to think about where we are governor».

He suggested that the green light to begin talks about a post-Brexit craft deal would not come until December at the earliest.

Last month Prime Ecclesiastic Theresa May used a speech in Florence to set out proposals for a two-year transition patch after the UK leaves the EU in March 2019, in a bid to ease the deadlock.

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