UK backtracking on commitments, says Michel Barnier


EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier has accused the UK of “backtracking” on its commitments in the latest round of post-Brexit trade talks. He said no “significant progress” had been made this week, and insisted the UK “respect” negotiation rules.

But the UK said the talks had been “positive” and it remained “committed to a successful outcome”. The two sides are opposed over issues including fishing rights, competition rules and police cooperation. This week’s discussions – held online – were seen as the last chance to make progress on these ahead of a summit that is expected take place later this month, involving Prime Minister Boris Johnson and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen.The UK has until the end of June to ask for the “transition period” – during which the country stays in the single market and customs union – to be extended into next year. But Mr Johnson has ruled this out.(BBC)…[+]