Avoiding the ‘cliff edge’: Immediate trade arrangements post-Brexit need to be given higher priority in Article 50 negotiations

The European Union, under the Commission’s lead negotiator Michel Barnier, has proposed to begin Brexit negotiations with the United Kingdom on June 19th next following the latter’s general election. Based on the European Council’s guidelines on the EU’s objectives for these negotiations, detailed negotiating directives have been agreed by the General Affairs Council. The Commission’s Task Force on the Article 50 of the Treaty of the European Union (TEU) negotiations has also begun to prepare draft position papers, beginning with two on essential principles of citizens’ rights and essential principles on financial services.
This level of preparedness on the EU side for the forthcoming negotiations contrasts sharply with the impressions we have of the UK side.

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