According to the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), a source in the British government said that unless there is a “significant shift” in the EU in the next few days, there will be no post-Brexit trade agreement between the UK and the EU.
British government sources said that negotiations are expected to continue on the 21st local time. Allegedly, the British side may decide whether to reach an agreement before Christmas on December 25.
According to reports, at present, the UK and EU have been negotiating on the gradual implementation of the new fishery arrangements and other issues. Barnier, the EU’s chief negotiator, said that any agreement must be “balanced and mutually beneficial.” He posted on social media on the 20th local time that the negotiations are at a “critical moment” and both parties are “working hard” to narrow their differences.
Barnier said, “We respect the sovereignty of the United Kingdom, and we hope that the other side will do the same. Both the EU and the United Kingdom must have the right to enact their own laws and control their own waters. Both of us should be able to take action when our interests are threatened.”
The UK officially “Brexit” on January 31, 2020, and then entered an 11-month transition period. The two sides started negotiations on future relations with a trade agreement as the core in March, and look forward to reaching an agreement during the transition period. If no agreement is reached, the bilateral trade will return to the World Trade Organization framework from 2021 and re-implement arrangements such as border inspections and tariffs.