The European Commission has started pressuring Mr Barnier to agree to a trade deal with Britain – according to a Times report – raising hopes in Downing Street that a deal could be reached by Friday .
But BBC Europe editor Katya Adler tweeted that European diplomats told her they were “nervous”. Mr Barnier might be tempted to strike a deal with the UK – “for his legacy” – but one that would infuriate national governments across the bloc.
They fear that a deal will give the UK “too much of a competitive advantage over EU companies in their own single market” and although Mr Barnier receives broad support from the EU, there are concerns now that they are only “returned” in an agreement over time. to agree one.
Brexit News: European diplomats fear that Michel Barnier is “tempted” to conclude an agreement with the United Kingdom (Image: GETTY / PA)
Brexit News: Michel Barnier is in London to resume trade negotiations with British negotiators (Image: GETTY)
EU diplomats told me they fear Barnier will be tempted – for the sake of his legacy – to strike a deal with the UK to which national governments, for example France / NL, oppose
“European diplomats told me they fear Barnier will be tempted – for his legacy – to strike a deal with the UK that national governments, for example France / NL, oppose.
“Because finding it too ‘forgiving’, giving the UK too much of a competitive advantage over EU companies in their own single market.”
“Overall, Barnier still enjoys broad support from the EU, but there is nervousness among some countries that before time they will be ‘sacked’ in a deal.
READ MORE: EU ordered to rethink its fishing plan, UK will NEVER accept demands
Brexit News: BBC’s Katya Adler gave insight into sentiment among EU diplomats (Image: @BBCkatyaadler / Twitter)
She added: “Strongly agree with, say, @peterfoster, the focus on fish in the UK is red herring.
“For the EU, the MAIN concern is ‘fair competition’, that is, a level playing field. Let’s see what this week brings. ”
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen has been “very helpful” and “keen to unblock things,” the Times report added.
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Brexit News: Michel Barnier resumed face-to-face discussions on a trade deal (Image: GETTY)
Brexit News: Ursula von der Leyen has already warned that time is running out to secure a trade deal (Image: GETTY)
French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian previously accused the UK of “dragging its feet” in the latest Brexit negotiations.
He added that Paris would not back down on fishing issues.
Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab on Sunday said the UK and the EU headed for a ‘very important week’ as talks on a trade deal entered their final days with several disputes remaining to be resolved .
Brexit News: UK to leave EU for good (Image: EXPRESS)
Mr Raab told the BBC: “This is a very important week, the last real big week, subject to any further postponement, we are really down to two basic questions.
The Foreign Minister told Times Radio in a separate interview: “The bottom line is that in the normal course of things we have to make a deal within the next week or maybe a few days beyond. . ”
In his interview with Sky’s Sophy Ridge on Sunday, Mr Raab said fishing rights remained an ‘exceptional major bone of contention’ with the EU, but a deal could still be reached.
“If you really look at what the outstanding issues are, of course, a level playing field, but it feels like there is some progress towards greater respect for the British position.
“As far as fishing is concerned, there is a point of principle: by leaving the EU we will become an independent coastal state and we must be able to control our waters.
Mr Raab said the UK recognizes the impact on other countries, but warned: ‘I think the answer is’ Can the EU accept this point of principle that comes with us leaving the political club ? “.
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