Brexit latest news: Talks break up 24 hours early in Brussels – LIVE updates
BREXIT negotiations have ended 24 hours early on Thursday with “significant differences” still remaining between the EU and the UK.
Talks in Brussels between Boris Johnson's Europe adviser David Frost and the EU led by Michel Barnier were due to continue into Friday.
But Mr Frost said talks will continue next week in London.
Michel Barnier accused Britain of showing a lack of respect for his demands.
He said there are still "serious divergences" between both teams as the latest round of negotiations ended in deadlock.
This comes as Parliament passed the Immigration Bill last night that would end the UK's Freedom of Movement with the European Union, which will see EU nationals and their families will be subjected to UK's immigration laws.
Follow our Brexit live blog below for all the latest updates…
WHAT DOES TOP NEGOTIATOR SAY ABOUT TALKS?
The UK's chief negotiator David Frost said that while the ability to meet in person had given “extra depth and flexibility” to the discussions, there was more to do.
“We have completed our discussion of the full range of issues in the negotiation in just over three days,” he said.
“The negotiations have been comprehensive and useful.
“But they have also underlined the significant differences that still remain between us on a number of important issues.”
THE BIG NEWS TODAY? NO NEWS AT ALL
The big news of the day is no news as the latest round of talks between Britain and the EU on a post-Brexit trade deal break up early.
There are “significant differences” on both sides, officials say.
The talks this week have been taking place in Brussels with the negotiating teams meeting face-to-face for the first time since the Covid-19 outbreak.
EXPORTS TO NI FROM UK WILL NEED NEW CUSTOMS PAPERS
Companies exporting goods into Northern Ireland from the rest of the UK will need to file new customs paperwork after Brexit.
According to a draft government plan seen by Bloomberg News, firms will need to file import declarations as well as safety and security declarations in advance, otherwise they will not be allowed to move goods across the Irish Sea.
BARNIER WARNED BORIS WILL TAKE NO DEAL BREXIT
An expert has warned Boris Johnson will walk away with no Brexit trade deal if an agreement cannot be reached with the European Union.
Professor at Birmingham University and director of Centre for Brexit Studies, Alex De Ruyter, said he believes a no deal Brexit is “the most likely outcome”.
The professor said: “I still think a no deal Brexit is still the most likely outcome, though never say never, given how the UK Government caved-in on Northern Ireland which precipitated the withdrawal agreement – there is still time for a last-minute fudge.”
He added: “That said, the hard-core Brexiteers in the Government reject any notion of continued adherence to EU regulatory thresholds so I think Johnson may be prepared to go down this road.”
LORD HESELTINE CRITICISES PM: 'WE WERE PROMISED A DEAL, WE HAVEN'T GOT A DEAL'
Former Deputy Prime Minister Lord Michael Heseltine has criticised Boris Johnson after the latest round of Brexit talks broke down.
Lord Heseltine told Sky News: “We were promised a deal, we haven't got a deal.”
“We were told there would be wonderful opportunities for new deals across the world.”
“Does anyone seriously think that President Trump in the dying days of his first presidency is going to be making great concessions to overseas interests such as Britain's?”
He also described the PM’s economic recovery speech as “deeply disappointing.”
Lord Heseltine said the speech “announced packages of money for specialist purposes” and “ignored local enthusiasm and expertise”.
NORTHERN IRELAND JOB CUTS ‘DOUBLE WHAMMY’ OF BREXIT AND COVID-19
A new survey claims half of all firms in Northern Ireland intend to reduce staff following lockdown.
The cuts and impact on the economy have been described as a ‘double whammy of Brexit and coronavirus’ by chief executive of Northern Ireland Chamber.
Ann McGregor, said: “Businesses were already concerned about the impact of Brexit on the economy before Covid-19.”
“However the recent pandemic has placed this in an entirely different context, with companies facing a double whammy of Brexit and the Covid-19 fallout, placing a huge challenge on the business community in Northern Ireland.”
‘CERTAIN TORY MPS’ ACCUSED OF ‘WRECKING’ EU
Former Irish Prime Minister John Bruton has accused “certain Tory MPs” of attempting to “wreck” the European Union.
In an interview with Euronews discussing the break-down of post-Brexit talks, Mr Bruton said: “There is an issue of trust. There is an issue of defining what is it that the British really want. Do the British actually want a no deal Brexit?”
“There are some who would suggest they do. Though some people in the Conservative Party want to wreck the European Union.”
“I've seen certain Tory MPs saying we must get Brexit right because we want others to follow us – because we want to set an example in the way we deal with Brexit so that others will leave the European Union.”
“Well, if that's the approach of the British Government then it would be better to have no deal.”
NEXT BREXIT MEETING IN LONDON
Next week’s Brexit meeting will be the first time talks take place in London.
It was previously planned to hold discussions in London near the start of negotiations, however this had to be abandoned due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The meeting will come after Michel Barnier accused British trade negotiators of a lack of respect, with Brexit talks ending a day early today amid “serious divergences” between the UK and the EU.
NO PROGRESS ON KEY BREXIT ISSUES
The big Brexit news today is, of course, that the UK and the EU has failed to make progress.
UK chief negotiator David Frost and his EU counterpart Michel Barnier had intended to meet alone on Friday.
But officials said that plan had been ditched.
“The negotiations have been comprehensive and useful,” Frost said in a statement.
“But they have also underlined the significant differences that still remain between us on a number of important issues.”
Barnier said the bloc continued to believe an agreement was possible and in everyone's interest.
RURAL SCOTLAND 'WILL BE BADLY HIT BY THRESHOLD'
Following on from that last blog post about immigration halving in Scotland post-Brexit, there's some reaction from the Scottish Government's independent expert advisory group on migration and population.
The group has found that 52.5% of roles in Scotland pay less than £25,600, including up to 90% of jobs in the care sector.
Scotland's gender pay gap also means that 63.3% of jobs currently employing females would not be available to migrants.
Professor Christina Boswell of the University of Edinburgh, who chairs the group, said there may be a “moderate expansion of immigration” from outside the EU due to the reduced salary threshold but remote and rural areas of Scotland “will still be more adversely affected after Brexit, because of the lower number of jobs available meeting the threshold”.
IMMIGRATION COULD BE HALVED IN SCOTLAND AFTER BREXIT
Immigration into Scotland could be halved by the proposed salary threshold and risks staff shortages in areas such as the care sector, a study has found.
Home Office plans post-Brexit would require migrant workers to earn at least £25,600 a year to be able to work in the UK.
Currently, skilled workers from outside the European Union need to have a job offer with a minimum salary of £30,000 to be eligible for employment, but after Brexit the £25,600 threshold will apply to those both inside and outside the EU.
Self-employed people would not be eligible to migrate to the UK to work under the UK Government's plans.
Analysis by the Scottish Government's independent expert advisory group on migration and population estimates a reduction of net migration to Scotland of between 30% and 50%, based on forecasts of both EU and non-EU migrant labour.
BREAK WITH TRADITION
Michel Barnier is not holding his usual press conference today after a week of negotiations.
He usually takes the opportunity to berate Britain.
Both sides were optimistic that the first physical meeting since the start of the pandemic would help break the current deadlock.
Negotiations will continue next week in London.
The EU wants the final deal finalised by October so it can be ratified by the end of the year.
Negotiations ended early after talks broke down over fisheries and the “level playing” that would give the UK access to the single market.
Michel Barnier said the EU side had “listened carefully” to British concerns, but again made clear there could be no deal without agreements on fisheries and the so-called “level playing” requiring the UK to follow EU standards in return for continued access to the single market.
Negotiators on both sides disagree on regulations for businesses.
In regards to the fishing industry, the UK is strongly against EU demands for long-term access to British waters.
Mr Barnier did say some progress was made in areas including police cooperation or UK participation in EU programs
Michel Barnier said that 'serious differences' remain after talked between the UK and the EU ended early.
Barnier said that while Brussels had engaged “constructively”, officials needed to see an “equivalent engagement from the UK side”.
He said: “Our goal was to get negotiations successfully and quickly on a trajectory to reach an agreement..
“However, after four days of discussions, serious divergences remain.”
TALK TO THE HAND
The latest round of Brexit talks have ended early with “significant differences” still remaining on both sides.
Boris Johnson's Europe adviser David Frost said: “We have completed our discussion of the full range of issues in the negotiation in just over three days. Our talks were face-to-face for the first time since March and this has given extra depth and flexibility to our discussions.
“The negotiations have been comprehensive and useful. But they have also underlined the significant differences that still remain between us on a number of important issues.”
Talks in Brussels between Mr Frost's team and the EU side led by Michel Barnier were due to continue into Friday.
Mr Frost said talks will continue next week in London.
FEARS OF DISASTER
British firms are worried the government's planned systems to check goods going to the EU won't be ready in time by the Brexit transition period ends in 2021.
Boris Johnson's government is planning to bring an entirely new IT system to help check goods heading to the EU from the start of January.
Rod McKenzie, the Road Haulage Association's Rod McKenzie, said confusion over how the IT system would work and if it would be ready on time was “a cocktail for potential disaster at the moment”.
He told Business Insider: “The worry over this new IT system is massive. You wouldn't think you'd choose to run an entirely new and complex system with a bit of IT kit that nobody quite knows will actually work.
“The French might be helpful when it comes to UK imports staying in France — but what about those going further afield? It's so unclear and so frustrating.”
Economics minister John Glen has told lords that “we have not had any significant feedback from the EU” on the UK's position in regards to financial services.
He added that he hopes there would be a similar approach and that there would “not be a bonfire of regulations”.
Britain is set to reopen its temporary market access regime for EU financial companies in September.
This is to help firms through the Brexit divorce period, City A.M. reported.
There is currently a “temporary permissions regime” in place for EU-based financial companies.
Nausicaa Delfas, the Financial Conduct Authority’s (FCA) executive director for international, said in an online event: “Over 1,000 firms and over 600 fund managers have already notified us, and we will reopen the notification window on 30 September.”
IN HER DREAMS
Remainer Anna Soubry predicts the UK will beasking to rejoin the EU in 10 years.
Speaking on LBC, the former Tory MP claimed history will record Brexit as a terrible mistake.
The leader of Change UK said:“I'm a realist and the reality is we've left the European Union.
“I don't think there's an appetite at large for some movement that would win widespread support for us to rejoin because we haven't even fully left yet.
“I think it will be my children's generation that will do it, I think we'll be back in the EU in ten years time.
“Of course we'll never get the unique and very special and very good deal that we once had.
“No doubt the EU will say well if you want to rejoin you have to join the Euro, you've got to join Schengen. We were in a unique position but there's no point in looking backwards, we've got to look to the future.”
HANGING IN THE BALANCE
The pound sterling has stayed neutral against the euro as investors are assessing the probability of the UK being able to sign a trade deal with the EU by the end of this year.
July is a critical month for the pound as by the end, it should become clear with Britain will walk away with a deal or not.
Stephen Gallo, European head of FX strategy at BMO, said: “The second to last week and the last week of July are going to be the extreme Brexit crunch point.
“If there's not movement by the week of 20th or the week of 27th, that may be the second wave of selling in sterling.”
Against the euro, sterling was steady at 90.19 pence.
WE GOT THIS
Trading between the EU and UK will still flourish in the short-term even WITHOUT a Brexit deal, a top WTO candidate has said.
Hamid Mamdouh, who is seeking to run the World Trade Organization, said that the historic alliance between Britain and the EU should allow for goods and services to continue to flow across the borders.
The former WTO director of trade and services in investment said while on the broadcaster Econ Films’ CoronaNomics programme: “The UK and the EU have been following the same regulatory framework across sectors of the economy and that provides an exceptionally strong basis for strong and close trade relations, even if they fall on WTO rules.
“There will still be the reality of business flourishing in a way that, of course, isn’t as strong as when the UK was a member state of the EU, but it’s the passage of time without a bilateral agreement that will have an effect.”
Tory former Deputy Prime Minister Lord Heseltine criticised Boris Johnson's investment plan to boost the economy.
Lord Heseltine told BBC Radio 4's Today programme: “What we have is a twin crisis, which is the crisis of the corona epidemic… and it is over with the crisis of Brexit.
“It is a crisis of unprecedented scale and it is going to get worse.
“So, the question really is how is the Government responding, how should it respond?
“And I have to say I was deeply disappointed in the speech the Prime Minister made in Dudley.
“It was simply the sort of speech with a lot of proposals which were remarkably similar to what all governments have done faced with rising unemployment.
“They announce packets of money in housing and transport and repairs for the health service… but they lack the one thing that is essential, and that is the local enthusiasm, energy and enterprise.”
The UK Government has unveiled a new body called “Office for Talent” to attract scientists, researchers and innovators to come to the country.
It will make immigration “simple, easy and quick” for those wanting to move to the UK.
It comes as scientists have warned of uncertainty over Brexit could see top researchers and innovators leaving the UK.
The roadmap for the new Research and Development will cut “unnecessary red tape” to encourage the brightest and the best to work and study in the UK.
It includes a £300m investment for upgrading scientific infrastructure.
EU and UK Brexit negotiators are set to hold a fourth day of talks in Brussels.
Boris Johnosn has refused to extend the current Brexit transition period which means both sides will have to find an agreement before the end of this year.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel has warned that the EU 'must prepare' to not reach a deal.
BRITAIN WILL BE 'HIT MUCH HARDER', SENIOR GERMAN MP SAYS
The Chairman of Germany's Bundestag Foreign Affairs Committee Norbert Roettgen has had some strong words to say about a no-deal Brexit.
Speaking with Channel 4 News, he said “both sides are to blame” if a no-deal Brexit went ahead.
The prospect “would be disadvantageous to both sides” but it would “hit Britain much harder” the MP said.
However, he added: “We still can do something … we are living in a threatening, chaotic world and we have to stay together because unity means strength.
“Britain is alone – we are 27”.
Source: Read Full Article