Lunedi, 26 Giugno, 2017

Britain shifts focus to growth as it girds for Brexit talks

Sveva Terracina | 19 Giugno, 2017, 06:54

Adam Marshall, director general of the BCC, said businesses had felt disappointed that the economy had been sidelined in recent months and they wanted assurances they would be listened to as Brexit negotiations proceed.

Mr Davis will be accompanied by a nine-strong negotiating team that includes the most senior civil servants at the Department for Exiting the EU (DexEU), as well as officials from the Treasury and Home Office and Mark Sedwill, the national security adviser to the Prime Minister.

One European diplomat in London said the political upheaval was such that it was hard to know what to write back to his capital, pouring scorn on May's campaign slogan of "strong and stable leadership". Having said last Friday said that Brexit needed to be handled in a "pragmatic" way, yesterday he said Britain would still be leaving the EU's Customs union, but added that "transitional structures" would be needed to smooth that departure.

As the European Union has itself said, "nothing is agreed, until everything is agreed".

- Winter/spring 2017/18 - If talks are proceeding to plan, negotiators can be expected to be meeting regularly to iron out remaining issues and identify the points of difference to be settled by political leaders at the highest level.

On her part, Britain's Prime Minister said that she was keen to stick to her planned timetable and would start the Brexit talks in Brussels.

Meanwhile, finance minister Philip Hammond said on Sunday Britain needs a seamless Brexit transition to support jobs and investment by ensuring a new customs arrangement with the European Union that avoids bureaucratic delays to trade, .


Such is the collapse of Mrs May's authority that her entire Brexit strategy is being picked apart in public by her ministers, her lawmakers and her allies on the eve of formal negotiations, which begin in Brussels today at 0900GMT (5pm Singapore time). A second phase of talks on future trade relations will follow only after they are satisfied that sufficient progress has been made on these issues.

May has clung on to power since the election but has so far failed to strike an agreement with Northern Ireland's ultra-conservative Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) that would allow her to govern.

The start of Brexit negotiations next week will focus on European Union citizens' rights, the UK's divorce bill and Northern Ireland's border.

Ruth Davidson, an enthusiastic Remainer and now a very influential figure in the Tory party after helping her Scottish Conservatives increase from only one seat in the Westminster Parliament to 13, told May that she must now pursue a softer "open Brexit" that prioritizes economic prosperity over immigration control.

The third key issue is the future of the peace process in the British province of Northern Ireland, and the status of the border with the Republic of Ireland. He added that the scheduled Brexit talks were an important milestone since then.

Given the Conservatives' diminished political influence, the scenario of the "soft Brexit", which implies the preservation of UK's membership in the single European Union market, or some other variant of compromise, is becoming likely.

The EU says Britain must honour its contributions to the bloc's budget, which has already been agreed up to 2020, as well as commitments to development programmes for poorer member states. They argue instead for a "soft" version, prioritizing some form of continued access to the single market in order to minimize economic damage.

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