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Britain on collision course with EU over trade

Thu, 27th Feb 2020 10:18

LONDON, Feb 27 (Reuters) - Britain unveiled a tough
negotiating mandate for talks with the European Union on
Thursday, underlining its desire for future economic and
political independence that pits London on a collision course
with Brussels.

After leaving the EU last month, Britain has until the end
of the year to negotiate a trade deal and agreements on
everything from fishing to transport, ending more than 40 years
of close political and economic relations.

Having accepted that by leaving the EU's customs union and
single market British businesses will encounter new "frictions"
in trade with the bloc, Britain has made its stance clear -
regained sovereignty will trump the economy.

The two sides have until June to get what London's
negotiating team called "the broad outline of an agreement" to
be finalised by September, otherwise Britain would head for an
Australian-style agreement, a looser trading arrangement.
(Reporting by Elizabeth Piper; editing by Guy Faulconbridge)

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