Brexit trade talks are close to collapse as the UK and EU enter the final stages of discussions. Boris Johnson will speak to European Commission President Ursula Von Der Leyen on Monday evening, in a last minute bid to secure a trade agreement, while David Frost and Michel Barnier are also due to meet.
The two sides are at loggerheads over fishing rights, state aid rules and how trade disputes will be resolved in the future. These three issues have been arguing points for months, with little movement given by either side. Despite some newspaper reports a breakthrough had been made on fishing on Sunday evening, both UK government and EU sources have denied this.
One of the reasons the UK voted to leave the EU in 2016 was to regain control of its fishing rights. On the other hand Brussels is keen to keep as much of the UK’s fishing stock as possible, as thousands of jobs on the continent are dependent on having access to British waters. Michel Barnier reportedly gave a downbeat message to EU ambassadors on Monday on the state of the talks, saying there were major issues still to be resolved.
If no trade deal is reached, on 31st December the UK will leave the so-called transition period with the EU and the two sides will trade on World Trade Organisation rules. This will mean trade barriers and tariffs will be imposed, the UK will no longer be governed by EU laws and will have full control over its fishing waters.
Meanwhile MPs are due to vote on the controversial Internal Market Bill this week, which could break international law if no trade deal is reached with the EU. The government says this is a necessary safety net to protect the integrity of the UK’s internal market.
Read more: Defiant Boris Johnson to prepare for No Deal Brexit within 48 hours as chances of deal on knife edge at 50/50 - www.thesun.co.uk/news/brexit/13403529/brexit-boris-johnson-no-deal-48-hours-talks/
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