A new round of consultations between the EU and the United Kingdom on their future relations has not been successful. The European negotiator, Michel Barnier, says that the parties broke up in Brussels on Friday without any significant results.
Over the past five days, the EU and the UK have been trying to reach an agreement on the situation after the next turn of the year. The transitional period in force since the British departure from the European Union in January will then expire.
Mr Barnier blames the British representation for that. It would have been in the sand during the talks. The British negotiator David Frost says that the British did not put the brakes on the talks. He still believes, as he says, that the parties will come out.
Because the UK is no longer part of the EU, new agreements must be reached on all kinds of issues. These are trade issues and transport to energy and safety. The main pain points are fish quotas and state aid rules for business.
At present there is a so-called transition period in which, in fact, all the regulations remain the same. When that period ends without new trade agreements being reached, there is still a threat of a ‘hard Brexit’ that could lead to chaos.
The next round of consultations is from 7 to 11 September. Talks are also planned in the week of 28 September.