The Guardian: UK says it will consider walking away from Brexit talks in June

27 February 2020

Boris Johnson is asking the EU for a Canada-style trade deal but will consider whether to walk away from talks in June and prepare for an “orderly” exit from the transition period.

Setting out its negotiating mandate for EU talks, Downing Street said it wanted “regulatory freedom” from the EU and would not accept any role for the European court of justice (ECJ) in dispute resolution mechanisms.

The government said it hoped to achieve “the broad outline” of an agreement by June, with the aim of finalising a deal by September. If not enough progress had been made by June, the government would “need to decide whether the UK’s attention should move away from negotiations and focus solely on continuing domestic preparations to exit the transition period in an orderly fashion”.

The threat sets the UK on course for leaving the transition period on World Trade Organization (WTO) terms at the end of the year unless either or both sides make major concessions within four months.

While the UK wants to be free to set its own rules, the EU wants some degree of regulatory alignment, with the option of imposing tariffs if one side reneges. It would also like a role for the ECJ.

Downing Street says this would restrict the UK’s sovereignty more than in the EU’s offers to other nations such as Japan, Canada and the US.

The UK’s negotiating mandate asks for:


Full article on The Guardian

Negotiating mandate for EU talks

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