Merkel advisors call for Brexit delay till end of 2020

Merkel advisors call for Brexit delay till end of 2020

Merkel advisors call for Brexit delay till end of 2020

With the next round of Brexit negotiations due to start today, advice given to Angela Merkel by her team of economic advisors might well throw a spanner in the works.

The German Chancellor’s economic advice team are reported as having suggested the most sensible way forward is to ensure the UK remains in the bloc until at least 2020. The assessment by five senior economists, known in Germany as the ‘five wise men’, is likely to infuriate Downing Street as it recommends Britain replicates the current EU membership requirements until the current EU budget ends.

In the unlikely event the UK decides the suggestion to temporarily maintain the status quo is the best way forward, it would need to make the request directly to the EU and wait for unanimous approval by the 27 member states. According to ‘the five’, if preventing Britain’s leaving the EU isn’t possible, the negotiations should focus on a damage limitation exercise applicable to both sides. More time would be needed due to the legal complications involved, and it’s as yet unsure how this would affect Britons living in EU member states as well as those still determined to emigrate.

The advisors warned about the dangers of a no-deal result, saying it could cause an unacceptable amount of economic upheaval in the European Union, but added the possibility of Britain’s changing its mind and remaining within the bloc should not be completely excluded. UK negotiators headed up by Brexit minister David Davis are due in Brussels today, with the first meeting between Davis and Michel Barnier taking place tomorrow. The crux of the talks is expected to be the EU’s refusal to guarantee post-Brexit voting rights to UK expats.

Progress at this point seems highly unlikely as the UK is still sitting on its wallet as regards the so-called ‘divorce bill’. The UK team also believes it should be allowed to negotiate with individual EU member states on the voting issue, with the EU insisting this is not possible. The UK team’s position is expected to have been weakened still further by confusion in Parliament and increasing calls for May’s resignation and yet another general election.

Related Stories:

Latest News: