Brexit LIVE: Major part of deal COLLAPSES – EU says UK talks ‘like climbing Himalayas’

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BREXIT talks have been hit by a major blow after the two sides failed to agree to substantial elements of a deal this week, sparking anger in Brussels.

By Brian McGleenon PUBLISHED: Tue, Dec 15, 2020 | UPDATED: 15:57, Tue, Dec 15, 2020 1064

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Nigel Farage reveals his ‘fear’ over Brexit

As it stands, the issues of fair competition, fisheries, and governance still remain the main areas of divergence between Michel Barnier and Lord David Frost. However, other substantial elements within the deal, such as the Erasmus+ exchange programme have caused talks to stall. Such is the chaos over the matter, one MEP compared negotiating with the UK to “climbing the Himalayas”. 

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A member of the EU Parliament’s UK coordination group, Nathalie Loiseau, said: “We are far from an agreement.

“Nothing is impossible to a willing heart, but it’s like climbing the Himalaya from the northern side.”

Throughout talks, officials have expressed their concern over losing access to the valuable student exchange programme. 

Promoted Story

Education and business leaders had stated the loss of the programme would remove £243million a year in income and cause an estimated 17,000 students to miss out on studying abroad. 

In particular, students from less affluent backgrounds would be the worst hit as they would be unable to fund their travel and expenses without the programme. 

Brexit live: EU hits out at UK officials

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Overall, the project receives £420million from EU students who study in the UK – after subtracting membership costs it drops to £243million. 

Joe Fitzsimons, the head of education and skills policy at the Institute of Directors, said: “Many employers deeply value the kind of international experience the Erasmus scheme helps foster.

“Given the benefits it can bring students and businesses, maintaining access to Erasmus and wider EU research and education partnerships has been a priority for the IoD from the off.”

On Monday, Mr. Barnier held talks with EU ambassadors to brief them on the current state of affairs before negotiations with Lord Forst reconvened. 

Although gaps still remain, he indicated the UK had backtracked on its demands thus sparking hope a deal could be agreed. 

A UK source later denied that, saying: “The inaccurate briefings from the EU side in recent days have made a difficult discussion even more challenging in the short period of time we have left.”

FOLLOW BELOW FOR LIVE UPDATES:

Related articles

3.45 pm update: The UK has signed a £5bn trade deal with Mexico.

The deal is seen as a “stepping stone” to a huge 11-nation trading pact.

The deal will also be seen as a major boost to Boris Johnson’s plans for when the UK has fully cut ties with Brussels.

3.15 pm update: Member of House of Lords urges Boris Johnson to consider the devasting impact of a no-deal on the UK’s services industry.

The member of the House of Lords said the “EU is frankly irreplaceable” in terms of the sector’s trade. 

Nicholas Le Poer Trench said on Tuesday that “services are 80 percent of our GDP and our services trade with Europe makes up 51 percent of our services exports.

“As it stands, Europe is a hugely important market for services. The most important.”

2.26 pm update: ‘France throwing toys out the pram!’ Boris Johnson urged to STOP negotiating with Barnier

Boris Johnson has been urged to walk away from Brexit negotiations after Michel Barnier introduced a punishment clause which could see Britain slapped with trade sanctions if EU fishermen are banned from UK waters.

During a series of private Brussels briefings, the Frenchman accused Downing Street of ‘backtracking’ on its own proposals for a three-year transition period for fishing rights.

While addressing MEPs, Mr. Barnier said Britain would have to face a potential punishment clause with “consequences” for any future decisions to close its fishing grounds to EU vessels.

The Frenchman suggested economic sanctions – such as trade tariffs – could be introduced to counter any such moves by Downing Street.

But Britons have lashed out at Mr. Barnier’s proposed plans with many calling for the Prime Minister to end negotiations now. One reader said: “So Joker Barnier expects the UK to agree to be penalised by the EU unless we guarantee FREE access rights now and in the future.

“What does Barnier not understand about taking back full control and regaining our UK sovereignty?”

A second reader said: “So basically he wants to punish us for controlling our own waters under International law.

“This is not the EU negotiating, this is France throwing its toys out the pram.

“We should refuse to deal with Barnier.”

Hardest hit countries from a no deal Brexit

Hardest hit countries from a no-deal Brexit (Image: Express)

1.52 pm update: Negotiations making slow progress – Simon Coveney 

UK and EU officials have made slow progress this week during negotiations, Ireland’s Foreign Minister Simon Coveney said today.

He told RTE: “I think what we’re seeing this week, having had a number of stalls in this process, is slow, but at the same time some, progress.

“My understanding is we’re making some progress in that area the level playing field.

“I think you can take it that because negotiating teams have gone really quiet here, that’s an indication to me that there is a serious if difficult negotiation continuing. I’m still hopeful that can result in a successful outcome agreement.”

1.19 pm update: Leaving without a deal most likely 

During a Cabinet meeting, the Prime Minister stated leaving without a deal remains the most likely outcome from talks. 

Although he stated negotiations will continue, gaps still remain between the two sides. 

The Prime Minister’s spokesman said: “The Prime Minister opened Cabinet with an update on the ongoing negotiations with the EU.

“He re-emphasized the desire to reach a free trade agreement – but not at any cost – and reiterated that any agreement must respect the independence and sovereignty of the UK.

“The Prime Minister made clear that not being able to reach an agreement and ending the transition period on Australian-style terms remained the most likely outcome but committed to continuing to negotiate on the remaining areas of disagreement.”

Related articles

12.48 pm update: PM’s officials warn Brexit trade talks still ‘difficult’ despite claims deal is close

Boris Johnson’s officials yesterday warned that Brexit trade talks are still “difficult” despite claims from Brussels that a deal is close.

EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier has told European ambassadors that an agreement on future ­relations between the UK and bloc could be reached this week after progress over the weekend.

But tensions were rising again ­yesterday after the EU demanded the power to punish the UK with restrictions on British firms, including car manufacturers, in retaliation for any move to block European fishing fleets from UK coastal waters.

A senior Government source accused the EU of briefing ­“inaccurate” accounts of the latest developments.

The source said: “Talks remain ­difficult and we have not made ­significant progress in recent days, despite efforts by the UK to bring energy and ideas to the process.

“Like any sovereign country, we must have the right to take our own decisions and to choose regulations that suit the UK.

“We can not sign up to dynamic alignment through the back door. The UK cannot be locked into the EU’s regulatory orbit.”

11.48 am update: Ben Habib hits out at EU

Commenting on a piece by former BBC man, Andrew Neil, the former Brexit Party insisted the EU is “not a liberal democracy”. 

He added: “The EU is not a liberal democracy; it does not practice market economics; and, it only applies its laws when it suits it.

“Worrying you would think as you do.”

EU losses from hard Brexit

EU losses from hard Brexit (Image: Express)

11.38 am update: Try your worst, Michel! Fishing chief says UK in control even if EU forces through no deal

A fishing chief has backed Boris Johnson’s Brexit approach, claiming the UK would thrive even in a no-deal Brexit.

Mike Park, chief executive of the Scottish White Fish Producers’ Association, said the fishing industry was not concerned about a no-deal Brexit. I

Mr. Park admitted the Association would prefer an agreement on fisheries within a wider trade deal under a framework agreement but said the UK would remain in control even under no deal.

The fishing boss said: “In terms of the larger vessels that benefit from greater shares of regulated stocks, we would immediately move into coastal state negotiations where hopefully we could negotiate greater shares of those stocks on the basis that we give other people access to the water, so there’s no change in terms of what it means for the sector that fishes your cod, your haddock, and other stocks.

“In terms of these larger vessels, we have no concerns because we think we can seek a good deal through the avenue which is the international norm where you sit down and negotiate with your neighbours in terms of who gets access to where and what they can catch so we think.

“In that aspect, a no-deal is no worse than getting a deal through a fisheries framework agreement.”

Brexit news: Michel Barnier briefed ambassadors on Monday

Brexit news: Michel Barnier briefed ambassadors on Monday (Image: PA)

10.54 am update: Brexit deal could be struck within days 

A diplomat from the EU stated a deal could be struck although any deal could fall throw at the last minute. 

They said: “Patient still alive but keep the undertaker on speed dial.”

Both Michel Barnier and Ursula von der Leyen had stated talks have progressed to the final stages. 

A spokesman for the UK said: “The PM’s words that no-deal remains the most likely outcome stand.”

10.22 am update: Widdecombe rages at Boris’s no deal bluff and warns of “massive Brexit trade deal fudge”

Boris Johnson has been issued a stern warning by Brexiteer Ann Widdecombe who insisted the Prime Minister has “no excuse” to not see Brexit through.

The former Brexit Party MEP insisted that Britons are counting on Boris Johnson to deliver Brexit on December 31 after negotiations were extended on the weekend.

Speaking on Farage LIVE, Ann Widdecombe said: “People do forgive him. I think part of that is due to his opposition being so appalling weak.

“If people think that Boris is weak well, Keir Starmer is hardly there at all.

“Part of it is that but the other part is people desperately want to believe in Boris.

“They think he’s the real thing. He’s very different from previous Prime Ministers.

“They want to believe in Boris. I used to believe in Boris and I really hoped that he would see this through when he got his majority of 80 after all, he’s got no excuse not to see it through.”

Brexit: Ann Widdecombe criticizes Boris Johnson’s negotiations
ttps://www.express.co.uk/news/politics/1372608/Brexit-news-latest-brexit-deal-michel-barnier-david-frost-fisheries-no-deal-boris-johnson?utm_source=express_newsletter&utm_campaign=politics_newsletter2&utm_medium=email&jwsource=cl

9.38 am update: Brexit fisheries chaos as Dutch warn ‘many will go bankrupt’ without UK waters

Brexit has caused concern in the Netherlands as its fishermen warn many will go bankrupt if the country can no longer fish in UK waters.

A no-deal Brexit could cause disruption for fishermen on both sides of the English Channel, but Dutch fishermen have previously expressed concern over the long term impacts of the UK’s departure.

Dutch skipper Cor Vonk said in 2019 that “many will go bankrupt” in the Netherlands if access to UK waters is ended.

He said: “It’s really a disaster for the fishermen, as 50 percent of their turnover is caught in British waters. So for the Dutch fishermen, it’s really a tragedy if the British waters are closed.

“We’re talking about 500 to 600 families left in the drink. Many fishermen will go bankrupt, and perhaps us too.”

8.47 am update: Boris Johnson to launch post-Brexit trade drive 

The Prime Minister will travel to India in January 2021 in order to boost trade ties with the country. 

it will be his first bilateral visit since taking office and will mark a year where the UK will hold the G7 and UN climate change summits. 

Mr. Johnson said: “I am absolutely delighted to be visiting India next year at the start of an exciting year for Global Britain, and look forward to delivering the quantum leap in our bilateral relationship that Prime Minister Modi and I have pledged to achieve.

“As a key player in the Indo-Pacific region, India is an increasingly indispensable partner for the United Kingdom as we work to boost jobs and growth, confront shared threats to our security and protect our planet.”

Brexit endgame

Brexit endgame (Image: Express)

8.31 am update: EU must move!

Secretary to the Treasury, Stephen Barclay has claimed the EU must change its position if a deal is to be reached. 

He told Sky News: “The discussions are ongoing. The fundamentals remain the same.

“It is in both sides’ interest to have a deal. That is what the Prime Minister has committed to.

“The Prime Minister is battling for Britain. And whether there is a deal is not simply down to the actions of the Prime Minister, it needs the EU to move to respond.”

7.47 am update: French fishermen vow to blockade Channel as no-deal Brexit could spark “warlike” scenes

French fishermen have threatened to blockade Dover and Calais if there is a no-deal Brexit – warning it could spark “warlike” scenes in the English Channel.

Trawlermen warned they would disrupt the flow of ferries carrying vital goods in response to being shut out of Britain’s fishing grounds.

A union baron said Britain’s threat to send gunboats to police the UK’s coastal waters “would mean that we are negotiating things that relate to war”.

Downing Street is still claiming a no-deal Brexit is the “most likely” outcome for the trade talks.

Dimitri Rogoff, president of Normandy’s regional fisheries committee, claimed the move would see Dutch, Belgian and German ships flocking into French waters.

He said: “If we are deprived of our fishing grounds, we will not watch the British supply the French market.

“There will therefore be blockages to ferries, since this mainly happens by ferries. And on that, we are quite clear and determined.”

Brexit news: Fisheries

Brexit news: Fisheries (Image: Express)

7.19 am update: “Negotiating with the UK like trying to climb the Himalayas” 

The areas of divergence remain between the two sides but now talks have failed to reach an agreement on the valuable Erasmus+ programme. 

The project generates £243million a year for the UK and allows an estimated 17,000 students to continue their education abroad. 

On Monday, Mr. Barnier concluded the two sides were unable to come to an agreement on the programme. 

Following the news of the deadlock, MEP Nathalie Loiseau and member of European Parliament’s UK coordination group said: “We are far from an agreement.

“There are indeed other points than the level playing field, governance, and fisheries which remain to be solved.

“Nothing is impossible to a willing heart, but it’s like climbing the Himalaya from the northern side.”

Related articles

Brexit News

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express_logo_christmas
Reprint

BREXIT talks have been hit by a major blow after the two sides failed to agree to substantial elements of a deal this week, sparking anger in Brussels.

By Brian McGleenon PUBLISHED: Tue, Dec 15, 2020 | UPDATED: 15:57, Tue, Dec 15, 2020 1064

Copy link

Nigel Farage reveals his ‘fear’ over Brexit

As it stands, the issues of fair competition, fisheries, and governance still remain the main areas of divergence between Michel Barnier and Lord David Frost. However, other substantial elements within the deal, such as the Erasmus+ exchange programme have caused talks to stall. Such is the chaos over the matter, one MEP compared negotiating with the UK to “climbing the Himalayas”. 

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A member of the EU Parliament’s UK coordination group, Nathalie Loiseau, said: “We are far from an agreement.

“Nothing is impossible to a willing heart, but it’s like climbing the Himalaya from the northern side.”

Throughout talks, officials have expressed their concern over losing access to the valuable student exchange programme. 

Promoted Story

Education and business leaders had stated the loss of the programme would remove £243million a year in income and cause an estimated 17,000 students to miss out on studying abroad. 

In particular, students from less affluent backgrounds would be the worst hit as they would be unable to fund their travel and expenses without the programme. 

Brexit live: EU hits out at UK officials

Brexit live: EU hits out at UK officials (Image: GETTY) Sign up for FREE now and never miss the top politics stories again

We will use your email address only for sending you newsletters. Please see our Privacy Notice for details of your data protection rights.

Overall, the project receives £420million from EU students who study in the UK – after subtracting membership costs it drops to £243million. 

Joe Fitzsimons, the head of education and skills policy at the Institute of Directors, said: “Many employers deeply value the kind of international experience the Erasmus scheme helps foster.

“Given the benefits it can bring students and businesses, maintaining access to Erasmus and wider EU research and education partnerships has been a priority for the IoD from the off.”

On Monday, Mr. Barnier held talks with EU ambassadors to brief them on the current state of affairs before negotiations with Lord Forst reconvened. 

Although gaps still remain, he indicated the UK had backtracked on its demands thus sparking hope a deal could be agreed. 

A UK source later denied that, saying: “The inaccurate briefings from the EU side in recent days have made a difficult discussion even more challenging in the short period of time we have left.”

FOLLOW BELOW FOR LIVE UPDATES:

Related articles

3.45 pm update: The UK has signed a £5bn trade deal with Mexico.

The deal is seen as a “stepping stone” to a huge 11-nation trading pact.

The deal will also be seen as a major boost to Boris Johnson’s plans for when the UK has fully cut ties with Brussels.

3.15 pm update: Member of House of Lords urges Boris Johnson to consider the devasting impact of a no-deal on the UK’s services industry.

The member of the House of Lords said the “EU is frankly irreplaceable” in terms of the sector’s trade. 

Nicholas Le Poer Trench said on Tuesday that “services are 80 percent of our GDP and our services trade with Europe makes up 51 percent of our services exports.

“As it stands, Europe is a hugely important market for services. The most important.”

2.26 pm update: ‘France throwing toys out the pram!’ Boris Johnson urged to STOP negotiating with Barnier

Boris Johnson has been urged to walk away from Brexit negotiations after Michel Barnier introduced a punishment clause which could see Britain slapped with trade sanctions if EU fishermen are banned from UK waters.

During a series of private Brussels briefings, the Frenchman accused Downing Street of ‘backtracking’ on its own proposals for a three-year transition period for fishing rights.

While addressing MEPs, Mr. Barnier said Britain would have to face a potential punishment clause with “consequences” for any future decisions to close its fishing grounds to EU vessels.

The Frenchman suggested economic sanctions – such as trade tariffs – could be introduced to counter any such moves by Downing Street.

But Britons have lashed out at Mr. Barnier’s proposed plans with many calling for the Prime Minister to end negotiations now. One reader said: “So Joker Barnier expects the UK to agree to be penalised by the EU unless we guarantee FREE access rights now and in the future.

“What does Barnier not understand about taking back full control and regaining our UK sovereignty?”

A second reader said: “So basically he wants to punish us for controlling our own waters under International law.

“This is not the EU negotiating, this is France throwing its toys out the pram.

“We should refuse to deal with Barnier.”

Hardest hit countries from a no deal Brexit

Hardest hit countries from a no-deal Brexit (Image: Express)

1.52 pm update: Negotiations making slow progress – Simon Coveney 

UK and EU officials have made slow progress this week during negotiations, Ireland’s Foreign Minister Simon Coveney said today.

He told RTE: “I think what we’re seeing this week, having had a number of stalls in this process, is slow, but at the same time some, progress.

“My understanding is we’re making some progress in that area the level playing field.

“I think you can take it that because negotiating teams have gone really quiet here, that’s an indication to me that there is a serious if difficult negotiation continuing. I’m still hopeful that can result in a successful outcome agreement.”

1.19 pm update: Leaving without a deal most likely 

During a Cabinet meeting, the Prime Minister stated leaving without a deal remains the most likely outcome from talks. 

Although he stated negotiations will continue, gaps still remain between the two sides. 

The Prime Minister’s spokesman said: “The Prime Minister opened Cabinet with an update on the ongoing negotiations with the EU.

“He re-emphasized the desire to reach a free trade agreement – but not at any cost – and reiterated that any agreement must respect the independence and sovereignty of the UK.

“The Prime Minister made clear that not being able to reach an agreement and ending the transition period on Australian-style terms remained the most likely outcome but committed to continuing to negotiate on the remaining areas of disagreement.”

Related articles

12.48 pm update: PM’s officials warn Brexit trade talks still ‘difficult’ despite claims deal is close

Boris Johnson’s officials yesterday warned that Brexit trade talks are still “difficult” despite claims from Brussels that a deal is close.

EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier has told European ambassadors that an agreement on future ­relations between the UK and bloc could be reached this week after progress over the weekend.

But tensions were rising again ­yesterday after the EU demanded the power to punish the UK with restrictions on British firms, including car manufacturers, in retaliation for any move to block European fishing fleets from UK coastal waters.

A senior Government source accused the EU of briefing ­“inaccurate” accounts of the latest developments.

The source said: “Talks remain ­difficult and we have not made ­significant progress in recent days, despite efforts by the UK to bring energy and ideas to the process.

“Like any sovereign country, we must have the right to take our own decisions and to choose regulations that suit the UK.

“We can not sign up to dynamic alignment through the back door. The UK cannot be locked into the EU’s regulatory orbit.”

11.48 am update: Ben Habib hits out at EU

Commenting on a piece by former BBC man, Andrew Neil, the former Brexit Party insisted the EU is “not a liberal democracy”. 

He added: “The EU is not a liberal democracy; it does not practice market economics; and, it only applies its laws when it suits it.

“Worrying you would think as you do.”

EU losses from hard Brexit

EU losses from hard Brexit (Image: Express)

11.38 am update: Try your worst, Michel! Fishing chief says UK in control even if EU forces through no deal

A fishing chief has backed Boris Johnson’s Brexit approach, claiming the UK would thrive even in a no-deal Brexit.

Mike Park, chief executive of the Scottish White Fish Producers’ Association, said the fishing industry was not concerned about a no-deal Brexit. I

Mr. Park admitted the Association would prefer an agreement on fisheries within a wider trade deal under a framework agreement but said the UK would remain in control even under no deal.

The fishing boss said: “In terms of the larger vessels that benefit from greater shares of regulated stocks, we would immediately move into coastal state negotiations where hopefully we could negotiate greater shares of those stocks on the basis that we give other people access to the water, so there’s no change in terms of what it means for the sector that fishes your cod, your haddock, and other stocks.

“In terms of these larger vessels, we have no concerns because we think we can seek a good deal through the avenue which is the international norm where you sit down and negotiate with your neighbours in terms of who gets access to where and what they can catch so we think.

“In that aspect, a no-deal is no worse than getting a deal through a fisheries framework agreement.”

Brexit news: Michel Barnier briefed ambassadors on Monday

Brexit news: Michel Barnier briefed ambassadors on Monday (Image: PA)

10.54 am update: Brexit deal could be struck within days 

A diplomat from the EU stated a deal could be struck although any deal could fall throw at the last minute. 

They said: “Patient still alive but keep the undertaker on speed dial.”

Both Michel Barnier and Ursula von der Leyen had stated talks have progressed to the final stages. 

A spokesman for the UK said: “The PM’s words that no-deal remains the most likely outcome stand.”

10.22 am update: Widdecombe rages at Boris’s no deal bluff and warns of “massive Brexit trade deal fudge”

Boris Johnson has been issued a stern warning by Brexiteer Ann Widdecombe who insisted the Prime Minister has “no excuse” to not see Brexit through.

The former Brexit Party MEP insisted that Britons are counting on Boris Johnson to deliver Brexit on December 31 after negotiations were extended on the weekend.

Speaking on Farage LIVE, Ann Widdecombe said: “People do forgive him. I think part of that is due to his opposition being so appalling weak.

“If people think that Boris is weak well, Keir Starmer is hardly there at all.

“Part of it is that but the other part is people desperately want to believe in Boris.

“They think he’s the real thing. He’s very different from previous Prime Ministers.

“They want to believe in Boris. I used to believe in Boris and I really hoped that he would see this through when he got his majority of 80 after all, he’s got no excuse not to see it through.”

Brexit: Ann Widdecombe criticizes Boris Johnson’s negotiations
ttps://www.express.co.uk/news/politics/1372608/Brexit-news-latest-brexit-deal-michel-barnier-david-frost-fisheries-no-deal-boris-johnson?utm_source=express_newsletter&utm_campaign=politics_newsletter2&utm_medium=email&jwsource=cl

9.38 am update: Brexit fisheries chaos as Dutch warn ‘many will go bankrupt’ without UK waters

Brexit has caused concern in the Netherlands as its fishermen warn many will go bankrupt if the country can no longer fish in UK waters.

A no-deal Brexit could cause disruption for fishermen on both sides of the English Channel, but Dutch fishermen have previously expressed concern over the long term impacts of the UK’s departure.

Dutch skipper Cor Vonk said in 2019 that “many will go bankrupt” in the Netherlands if access to UK waters is ended.

He said: “It’s really a disaster for the fishermen, as 50 percent of their turnover is caught in British waters. So for the Dutch fishermen, it’s really a tragedy if the British waters are closed.

“We’re talking about 500 to 600 families left in the drink. Many fishermen will go bankrupt, and perhaps us too.”

8.47 am update: Boris Johnson to launch post-Brexit trade drive 

The Prime Minister will travel to India in January 2021 in order to boost trade ties with the country. 

it will be his first bilateral visit since taking office and will mark a year where the UK will hold the G7 and UN climate change summits. 

Mr. Johnson said: “I am absolutely delighted to be visiting India next year at the start of an exciting year for Global Britain, and look forward to delivering the quantum leap in our bilateral relationship that Prime Minister Modi and I have pledged to achieve.

“As a key player in the Indo-Pacific region, India is an increasingly indispensable partner for the United Kingdom as we work to boost jobs and growth, confront shared threats to our security and protect our planet.”

Brexit endgame

Brexit endgame (Image: Express)

8.31 am update: EU must move!

Secretary to the Treasury, Stephen Barclay has claimed the EU must change its position if a deal is to be reached. 

He told Sky News: “The discussions are ongoing. The fundamentals remain the same.

“It is in both sides’ interest to have a deal. That is what the Prime Minister has committed to.

“The Prime Minister is battling for Britain. And whether there is a deal is not simply down to the actions of the Prime Minister, it needs the EU to move to respond.”

7.47 am update: French fishermen vow to blockade Channel as no-deal Brexit could spark “warlike” scenes

French fishermen have threatened to blockade Dover and Calais if there is a no-deal Brexit – warning it could spark “warlike” scenes in the English Channel.

Trawlermen warned they would disrupt the flow of ferries carrying vital goods in response to being shut out of Britain’s fishing grounds.

A union baron said Britain’s threat to send gunboats to police the UK’s coastal waters “would mean that we are negotiating things that relate to war”.

Downing Street is still claiming a no-deal Brexit is the “most likely” outcome for the trade talks.

Dimitri Rogoff, president of Normandy’s regional fisheries committee, claimed the move would see Dutch, Belgian and German ships flocking into French waters.

He said: “If we are deprived of our fishing grounds, we will not watch the British supply the French market.

“There will therefore be blockages to ferries, since this mainly happens by ferries. And on that, we are quite clear and determined.”

Brexit news: Fisheries

Brexit news: Fisheries (Image: Express)

7.19 am update: “Negotiating with the UK like trying to climb the Himalayas” 

The areas of divergence remain between the two sides but now talks have failed to reach an agreement on the valuable Erasmus+ programme. 

The project generates £243million a year for the UK and allows an estimated 17,000 students to continue their education abroad. 

On Monday, Mr. Barnier concluded the two sides were unable to come to an agreement on the programme. 

Following the news of the deadlock, MEP Nathalie Loiseau and member of European Parliament’s UK coordination group said: “We are far from an agreement.

“There are indeed other points than the level playing field, governance, and fisheries which remain to be solved.

“Nothing is impossible to a willing heart, but it’s like climbing the Himalaya from the northern side.”

Related articles

Brexit News