As the European Union will start its post-Brexit negotiations with Britain next week, an EU spokesperson has said that it is setting up preparations for a chaotic “no deal” outcome. Both, the EU and UK have to reach an agreement by December 31, before it Britain completes its 11-month transition period after officially leaving the 27-nation-bloc on January 31. While London has rejected the key demands put forth by the EU on February 27, the union has called for 'fair and balanced' trade talks.
The Downing Street has said on February 27 that it would leave the talks in June unless there is a “broad outline” of a deal. According to an official release by the British government setting out the mandate for its future relationship with the EU and its negotiations, London would “move away” from the discussions of a trade accord after working in a “speedy and determined fashion”. The UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson's government is hoping for a 'free-trade' agreement with the 27-nation-bloc to be “rapidly finalised by September”.
According to the official website, the official statement said, “The UK is committed to working in a speedy and determined fashion to do so, with an appropriate number of negotiating rounds between now and the June high-level meeting foreseen in the Political Declaration. The Government would hope that, by that point, the broad outline of an agreement would be clear and be capable of being rapidly finalised by September”.
It further added, “If that does not seem to be the case at the June meeting, the Government will 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”.
EU's head of negotiations with Britain, Michel Barnier has said that Brussels wants “fair and balanced” trade agreement. The 27-nation bloc also warned London that it would not cut a deal regardless of the cost. After the bloc's ministers agreed on insisting the so-called “level playing field” rules and the access to British waters for the European fishermen, Barnier told the reporters on February 25, “we will not conclude an agreement at any price”. Barnier, however, has promised that the discussions to reach an agreement will happen in “good faith”.