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Brexit talks: U.Ok. and EU start divorce negotiations


Brexit talks: U.Ok. and EU start divorce negotiations

What the UK election means for the economy

Brexit talks have lastly begun.

Officers negotiating the primary departure of a rustic from the European Union agreed Monday to a framework for discussions that promise to be essentially the most consequential for the UK because the finish of World Warfare II.

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Chief U.Ok. negotiator David Davis and his EU counterpart, former French international minister Michel Barnier, instructed reporters in Brussels that they might first tackle key questions over how a lot the U.Ok. owes the bloc, and the rights of thousands and thousands of residents who’ve settled in Britain or Europe.

In addition they mentioned their high deputies would instantly start work on a 3rd subject: The best way to keep away from a “onerous border” between Eire and Northern Eire that would endanger peace in a area that suffered many years of violence.

“It was clear from the opening that each of us need to obtain the absolute best consequence and the strongest potential partnership,” Davis mentioned.

However the U.Ok. gave floor by agreeing that talks on the nation’s future buying and selling relationship with its largest export market would solely happen when the EU decides that enough progress has been made on the highest three points.

Davis and Barnier will meet month-to-month. The U.Ok. will exit the EU in March 2019 until all EU nations agree to increase the negotiations.

Associated: The 5 5 big points Britain and EU should settle

A yr has handed since voters selected to tug the U.Ok. out of the EU. And practically three months have ticked away since Prime Minister Theresa Could began the two-year countdown to departure.

The EU has made its opening place clear. But Davis entered the talks representing a authorities in disarray.

A common election worn out Could’s parliamentary majority earlier this month and her place has been weakened additional within the wake of a lethal hearth in a London condominium constructing. The prime minister continues to be making an attempt to safe the help of a fringe celebration whose votes she must type a authorities.

Could’s hardline EU exit technique can be being more and more known as into query.

Associated: Europe’s new finance guidelines put 83,000 jobs in danger

How an extraordinary UK election unfolded

Could had promised to take Britain fully out of the bloc’s widespread buying and selling space and slash the variety of folks coming from the EU. She even threatened to stroll away from Europe with out paying a hefty divorce invoice or hanging a brand new commerce deal, below the mantra that “no deal is healthier than a foul deal.”

However the enterprise neighborhood and lots of lawmakers need to retain nearer ties with Europe, and they’re heaping stress on the prime minister to vary her strategy. One key determine calling for extra emphasis on the economic system is U.Ok. Treasury chief Philip Hammond.

“My clear view — and I imagine the view of nearly all of folks in Britain — is that we must always prioritize defending jobs, defending financial development and defending prosperity as we enter these negotiations and take them ahead,” he mentioned final week.

Associated: File variety of Brits take German citizenship after Brexit

A coalition of influential enterprise teams echoed that sentiment on Monday, saying that the federal government ought to “put the economic system first” within the Brexit talks. The group mentioned any deal ought to decrease commerce limitations and embody a versatile immigration system.

brexit negotiations
David Davis and Michel Barnier met Monday in Brussels.

A ballot printed over the weekend reveals slim majority of Britons now need the prospect to vote on the phrases of Brexit when the talks are concluded.

Davis caught to Could’s script on Monday, saying with out qualification that Britain can be leaving Europe’s single market and its customs union.

Barnier, in the meantime, made clear value must be paid for the unprecedented break up.

“We every should assume our duty and the results of our selections,” he mentioned on the conclusion of Monday’s press convention. “It isn’t about punishment, it isn’t about revenge. We’re implementing the choice taken by the UK to depart the European Union and unravel 43 years of patiently constructed relations.”

Financial information are starting to lend additional weight to the argument for a softer strategy to Brexit.

Customers, hammered by rising costs and stagnant wages, have snapped their wallets shut in current months. Political turmoil has triggered enterprise leaders to place investments on maintain.

The storm clouds started to assemble within the rapid aftermath of the referendum, when buyers rapidly despatched the pound to its lowest degree in many years over fears that Britain would lose preferential entry to Europe’s huge markets.

Traders are frightened that Britain might crash out of the EU with out an exit settlement in place, an consequence that might imply steep new limitations to commerce.

“No deal can be a really, very dangerous consequence for Britain,” Hammond mentioned Sunday.

— Ivana Kottasova contributed reporting.

CNNMoney (London) First printed June 19, 2017: 5:52 AM ET

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