THE European Commission now believes ‘sufficient progress’ has been made after Theresa May made a last-minute deal with the EU to move Brexit discussions onto phase two.
The deal means there will be no ‘hard border’ in Northern Ireland and EU citizens in the UK, and UK citizens in the EU, will see their rights protected and a financial settlement to cover existing debts has been agreed, thought to be in the ballpark of £50 billion, though no official figure has been released.
The Irish border was the last piece of the puzzle and was meant to be agreed on Monday but the DUP, who hold up Theresa May’s thin majority in the Commons, vetoed the proposed solution.
Theresa May has heralded the agreement and move to negotiations on trade as “hard won” and “in the interests of all.”
While speaking at an early morning press conference in Brussels, Mr Juncker said: “Today’s result is, of course, a compromise.”
Negotiations had been “difficult for both the UK and the EU”, he added.
Phase two of Brexit will focus on the transition period after we leave and Britain’s future trading relationship with the EU.