Johnson insists current terms cannot close the deal with the EU


British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has made it clear hours before his meeting with the President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, that in the current terms in which the agreement for the future relationship of the United Kingdom with the bloc is proposed he cannot accept it, insisting that “a good agreement” is yet to be found.

As he explained in the control session to the Government in the House of Commons, “our friends in the EU are currently insisting that if they approve a new law in the future that we in this country do not comply with or do not follow, then they want the automatic right to punish us and retaliate. “

Secondly, he added, “they are saying that the UK should be the only country in the world that does not have sovereign control over its fishing waters.” “I don’t think these are terms that no prime minister of this country should accept,” he stressed.

Thus, and as he did the day before, he has been confident that there is still time for “a good agreement” despite the fact that it should be closed before December 31 to avoid an abrupt Brexit.

Johnson will have dinner tonight with Von der Leyen in Brussels. Both agreed on Monday in a telephone conversation that it was necessary to take the step of seeing each other physically to try to advance in negotiations that had been stalled for months on the same three issues: same rules of competition, access of the European fleet to British waters and the governance of the agreement itself.

However, they did not yet reveal the date on which they planned to meet, waiting for the chief negotiators, the European Michel Barnier and the British David Frost, to prepare a summary with the keys to the differences. Frost and Barnier will accompany Von der Leyen and Johnson at the dinner originally planned at the headquarters of the European Commission.

Furthermore, on Wednesday London and Brussels announced a “principle of agreement” to resolve differences over the application of the divorce agreement. The Johnson Government has agreed to withdraw the clauses of the Internal Market Law that it designed to avoid compliance with various provisions of the Withdrawal Treaty that affected the border in Ulster, which has been interpreted as a first gesture by the ‘premier’ opening to the future agreement.

The meeting between Von der Leyen and Johnson will also take place just one day before the Heads of State and Government of the European Union meet at the European Council that will last Thursday and Friday in Brussels.

The leaders have among the priorities of their agenda addressing the difficulties to close the agreement of the European budget and the recovery fund, the strained relations with Turkey and the need to better coordinate the response to the coronavirus, so the capitals do not contemplate addressing in deep negotiation with the United Kingdom.

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