Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union David Davis (L) and European Chief Negotiator for Brexit, Michel Barnier hold a press conference after their meeting in Brussels, Belgium on November 10, 2017. Photo: Bloomberg
Brussels (People's Daily) - No breakthrough has been made in the sixth round of Brexit talks on November 10 amid unsettled divorce bill, said European Union chief negotiator Michel Barnier.
“Really just a day and a bit of talks”, said Barnier about the negotiations at a news conference in Brussels concluding the truncated Brexit talks with David Davis, the UK negotiator.
No substantial achievements this time increase the no-deal fear as Brexit has passed its midway point and only 504 days and 10 hours left before the March 29, 2019 deadline.
Future Brexit negotiations will be put on hold unless Britain makes its position clear on its divorce bill, the biggest hurdle to progress, within the next two weeks, Barnier warned.
"This is absolutely vital if we are to achieve sufficient progress in December," Barnier said. "It is just a matter of settling accounts as in any separation."
Davis gave no responds or comments directly about that two-week deadline, though he seemed to smirk at Barnier’s response to the question. Davis simply repeated Prime Minister Theresa May’s pledges from her Florence speech in September: to ensure that no member state lost out in the two years after Britain left the bloc, and to honor past commitments.
The EU and the UK have been in negotiations since June. They had initially planned to start trade talks in October, but political differences over how much the UK needs to pay before leaving the Union, how will the Irish border work after Brexit and what rights will EU citizens have in the UK, have derailed the process.
This has prolonged uncertainty for businesses and people, which may affect investment and personal decisions in both the UK and Europe.