There is no time for a completely new Brexit deal before the retirement deadline of October 31. That is what French President Emmanuel Macron says after a conversation with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Thursday.
“I want to be very clear. Next month we will not come to a new retirement agreement that is very different from the original,” Macron said.
The European Union and the United Kingdom should, if necessary, continue to talk until the end of September to reach an agreement.
An agreement between the EU and the UK must also be “respectful of fundamental European principles: stability in Ireland and integrity of the internal market,” Macron said. The French president leaves the door ajar for a different solution than the so-called backstop to prevent a hard border in Ireland.
The two leaders had a “constructive conversation” on Thursday between EU and UK relations after Brexit, the spokesperson said.
On Wednesday, Johnson visited German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who challenged the UK to come up with suitable alternatives for the backstop. Until now, they have always failed.
Johnson, in turn, warned Merkel and Macron that they are at risk of a potentially disorderly “no-deal Brexit” if they are not willing to make a new deal. He further states that it is feasible to make new agreements.
“Let us conclude Brexit, let us act wisely and pragmatically in the interest of both parties.”
It is now three years since the British people voted for leaving the EU, but it is still unclear what exactly that exit will look like.