UK's Hammond says challenge to avoid "cliff-edge" Brexit

UK's Hammond says challenge to avoid

UK's Hammond says challenge to avoid "cliff-edge" Brexit

At the same time, while it was a priority, he said, to show progress in averting difficulties for troubled Northern Ireland as a result of being on a new EU-UK border, agreement on how the border would work would depend on wider future trade ties.

Prime Minister Theresa May's failure to gain the majority she sought in the June 8 election has forced the government to rethink its focus both on Brexit and austerity.

Frenchman Barnier struck a firm tone as he said the timetable for Britain's divorce after four troubled decades of membership made sense.

Insisting the Government was "ready for the challenge" of exit talks, Mr Hammond said: "The future of our economy is inexorably linked to the kind of Brexit deal that we reach with the EU".

Meanwhile, the UK's Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond pressed for a smooth Brexit to avoid a damaging "cliff edge" for businesses, Reuters reported. Brexit negotiators will discuss Monday Britain's financial obligations to the European Union as the long, complicated and potentially perilous process of the United Kingdom leaving the bloc finally gets underway.

The two parties also agreed on holding one-week monthly rounds of negotiations, noting that the next round will be held on July 17 and will tackle the main issues of Britain's separation from the European bloc.

"We've agreed to talk about the rights of European Union citizens, which we've been saying all along was a top priority for us; something to deal with right at the start", he told BBC Radio 4's Today.

The UK government and European Union officials will now discuss the residency rights of European Union nationals in the UK and Britons on the continent, followed by a so called Brexit bill, which could see the UK pay €100bn to Brussels, and other other issues will be discussed further down the line.

Davis described the timetable as a "promising start" to the Brexit process."As you heard Michel said, we had a brief exchange earlier about the distinction between being optimistic and being determined".

He said: "It is our priority, it is citizens first".

The chancellor undermined the British prime minister's mantra that "no deal is better than a bad deal" on the eve of Britain's Brexit talks, after he suggested that "no deal would be a very, very bad outcome for Britain".

In Berlin, German Chancellor Angela Merkel emphasized the unity of the remaining 27 European Union countries, who have been alarmed in recent weeks by May's threats to walk out of the talks.

Macron, a committed pro-EU leader and ally of Merkel, also easily won French legislative elections on Sunday, cementing his power base. Our aim is to have one week of negotiations every month.

A bigger problem may be for British negotiators to resolve what trade relationship they want.

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