May hopes EU will respond 'positively' to Brexit offer

2017-11-17 15:58
Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May. (Dan Kitwood/Pool via AP)

Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May. (Dan Kitwood/Pool via AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Gothenburg - British Prime Minister Theresa May said on Friday she hoped the EU would respond "positively" to her proposals for Brexit, as the bloc's leaders warned time was running out to move to trade talks in December.

May will hold talks with EU President Donald Tusk, and has already met with her Irish, Swedish and Polish counterparts at a summit on European social reforms in Gothenburg as a deadline looms for Britain to make enough progress to move on to trade talks in December.

"I look forward to the European Union responding positively so that so we can move forward together and ensure that we can get the best possible arrangements for the future that will be good for people in the United Kingdom and across the remaining EU27," May said.

May repeated that "we will honour our commitments" on the exit bill the EU says Britain must pay, as she promised in a speech in Florence in September.

European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker told reporters Britain needed to do more if it hopes to unlock the next phase of Brexit negotiations, on future trade relations and a transition deal, at a summit in Brussels on December 14.

"The clock is ticking. I hope that we will be able to come to an agreement as far as the divorce is concerned at the December council (summit) but work has still to be done," Juncker told reporters.

EU Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier warned last week that Britain had just two weeks to meet the bloc's conditions on the divorce bill, citizens' rights and the Irish border if it wanted an agreement at the next EU summit to unlock the next phase of talks.

Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar meanwhile struck a firm line, insisting there had to be progress on Dublin's demands that Brexit should create no "hard border" between British-ruled Northern Ireland and EU member Ireland.

"I think it's certainly possible that we can come to conclusions in December allowing phase two talks to begin. But, you know, if we have to wait until the new year, or if we have to wait for further concessions, so be it."

Varadkar said Britain had "unilaterally taken the customs union and single market off the table" and therefore wanted it "written down in practical terms in the conclusions of phase 1" that there would be no physical border.

"It's 18 months since the referendum, it's 10 years since people who wanted a referendum started agitating for one, sometimes it doesn't seem like they've thought all this through," he said.

Read more on:    eu  |  theresa may  |  sweden  |  uk  |  brexit

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.