Brexit news: Economic impact of deal ‘ought to focus minds in last few days’ of trade talks, Raab says

Andy Gregory and Sam Hancock
·1-min read
<p>Michel Barnier makes his way to Brexit talks in London</p> (Victoria Jones/PA Wire)

Michel Barnier makes his way to Brexit talks in London

(Victoria Jones/PA Wire)

As face-to-face Brexit negotiations resume following coronavirus infection, the UK’s foreign secretary Dominic Raab has said that the “economic two-way advantage of getting this over the line ought to focus minds in the last few days” of trade talks.

With effectively just days left to secure a deal before the transition period ends on 31 December, fishing rights and “level playing field” issues remain the key sticking points. A government source demanded the EU bring “fresh thinking” on Sunday and derided an offer to reduce EU fleets’ quotas in British waters by 15 to 18 per cent as “risible”, adding: “They must understand that we are not going to sell out our sovereignty.”

Arriving in London on Friday night, the bloc’s chief negotiator Michel Barnier said he would continue to work with “patience and determination” to reach an agreement, but warned that the “same significant divergences persist”.