EU leaders told no UK trade deal most likely outcome

EU leaders told no UK trade deal most likely outcome
# 11 December 2020 20:18 (UTC +04:00)

A trade deal is unlikely to be agreed with the UK by Sunday's deadline, European leaders have been warned, APA reports citing BBC.

They were told by European Commission boss Ursula von der Leyen no deal was the likeliest end to "difficult" talks.

Afterwards, French President Emmanuel Macron said the EU would stand firm on key principles such as access to its common market and fishing quotas.

UK PM Boris Johnson says there is a "strong possibility" of no deal unless the EU shifted its position.

Time is running out to reach an agreement before the UK stops following EU trade rules on 31 December.

Weeks of intensive talks between officials have failed to overcome obstacles in key areas, including competition rules and fishing rights.

Mrs von der Leyen, who met Mr Johnson on Wednesday for three hours of talks, has briefed European leaders, who have just held a two-day summit in Brussels.

According to EU officials, she struck a downbeat note about the chances of success, saying the "main obstacles" standing in the way of a deal - disagreements over fair competition rules, how a deal would be enforced and fishing quotas - remained in place.

She later told reporters that the two sides' positions "remained apart on fundamental issues".