Published: Mon, September 03, 2018
Business | By Eloise Houston

Dominic Raab 'stubbornly optimistic' about Brexit deal

Dominic Raab 'stubbornly optimistic' about Brexit deal

Standing alongside Dominic Raab, the Brexit secretary, Mr Barnier said this was one of the "salient points which are still outstanding".

Political analysts have pointed out the markets badly misjudged the significance of Barnier comments, which were made during a press conference in Berlin.

The EU proposes that Northern Ireland stay aligned with the remaining 27 bloc members after Brexit as part of a "backstop", or insurance policy to avoid the reimposition of border checks and a risk to Irish peace gains.

"We must have a detailed backstop solution, which is legally operational in the withdrawal agreement", Barnier said.

The European Union's Michel Barnier said it was "possible" to get an agreement in time for a summit of all the bloc's leaders in Brussels on October 18-19, though a delay into November was also possible.

The EU and United Kingdom agreed a Joint Report last December which provides for a "backstop" to take effect if no other solutions were found to avoid a hard border on the island of Ireland.

"It's a matter of some urgency".

"This backstop is critical to conclude these negotiations because without a backstop there is no agreement".

"An agreement (on trade) by the year-end is more likely than not and more encouraging Brexit headlines could see leveraged funds further bail on their recently built short sterling positions", ING strategists said in a note.

European Union leaders will meet on 18 October, and while agreement on a withdrawal deal is no longer seen as likely by that data, Mr Raab said that he wanted to continue "accelerating and intensifying" negotiations.

Mr Raab promised any deal on the border would be "workable" for the nearby communities it would affect most.

Barnier said unresolved issues included geographical indications, the role of the EU's top court in policing the agreement and data protection, among others.

Today's remarks by Mr Barnier indicate that the European Union is determined that such a scenario is prepared for.

Raab, whose predecessor David Davis resigned in July over differences with Prime Minister Theresa May's negotiating strategy, said he was "stubbornly optimistic" that a deal could be reached.

"... We need to find a solution to control the movement of goods without rebuilding the border between Northern Ireland and Ireland".

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