The United Kingdom will not make a trade deal with the European Union if the latter is not willing to compromise, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson reportedly told German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Tuesday.
The UK is currently in a transition period as, while it has left the EU at the end of January, the country remains in the EU customs union and single market until 31 December 2020. Negotiations on a trade agreement after the transition period have been difficult, partly because of differing opinions concerning fishing rights and the influence of European courts on British legislation.
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“The prime minister underlined the UK’s commitment to working hard to find an early agreement out of the intensified talks process,” Johnson’s office said. “He also noted that the UK equally would be ready to leave the transition period on Australia terms if an agreement could not in the end be reached.” By Australia terms, the UK means leaving without a trade deal.
Merkel had already warned last week Wednesday, on Germany’s first day of the EU Presidency, that the EU and Germany should prepare for the possibility of a hard Brexit.
The Brussels Times