Brexit trade talks enter desperate final ‘hours’

BRUSSELS: British and EU negotiators plunged into the final hours of their scramble for a post-Brexit trade deal Friday, deeply divided on the highly-charged issue of fishing rights.

The UK will leave the EU single market in less than two weeks and time has all but run out for any agreement to be approved in time to head off a severe economic shock.

The European Parliament has demanded that it see the text of any accord by Sunday at the latest, and the UK government says it will not allow talks to go beyond December 31.

EU member states do not recognise the parliament’s deadline, but Brussels’ chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier told the MEPs before heading to talks with his UK counterpart David Frost that Friday marked a “moment of truth”.


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