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United Kingdom trade minister slams talk of Brexit punishment by the EU

13 March 2018

The European Commission is expecting to hear from the United States in the coming days how the European Union can avoid USA import tariffs on steel and aluminum, Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said on Tuesday.

The survey by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) is for businesses that offer their financial services under European Union "passporting" rules to customers in Britain from a base in another member state.

He hinted at doubts over agreeing a transition deal, of about two years, at next week's European Union summit, saying only that it would "hopefully" be agreed.

'We are monitoring the situation as the negotiations unfold and look forward to receiving additional clarity at the March council, ' said Honda's European government affairs manager Patrick Keating. "We will set out further details on these proposals and how the scheme will operate in due course". Accepting an "off-the-shelf" deal, would, she said, "mean a significant reduction in ... access to each other's markets compared to that which [the United Kingdom and the EU27] now enjoy" as well as being "inconsistent with the commitments" made by both sides regarding Northern Ireland.

Jean-Claude Juncker was speaking during a debate on Brexit in the European Parliament this morning ahead of a vote on future UK EU relations tomorrow.

The Ulster Unionist MEP will, alongside his party leader Robin Swann, meet with the EU's chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier and its chief Brexit co-ordinator Guy Verhofstadt in Strasbourg tomorrow.

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The EU last week snubbed British Prime Minister Theresa May's calls for a special post-Brexit deal by offering London just a free-trade agreement with no special treatment for Britain's mighty financial sector.

If in London someone assumes that the negotiations will deal with other issues first before the Irish issue, my response would be: "Ireland first", the European Union leader said, according to The Independent.

But mounting differences over Britain's divorce from the European Union have led the bloc to warn repeatedly that time was running out, that the post-Brexit transition was not a given, and that London should be more precise and realistic on what sort of future ties it sought.

The British chancellor Philip Hammond has already announced that he wants to include a seperate section for financial services in a future Brexit trade deal.

He continued to say "we could do a deal with America in 48 hours", which was met with laughter.

"In the Free Trade Agreement, we can offer trade in goods", but "services are about common rules, common supervision, and common enforcement", he said.

United Kingdom trade minister slams talk of Brexit punishment by the EU