• UK's call for help on Brexit impasse leaves EU diplomats scratching heads
    12 December 2018
    EU diplomats have no answers on how they could possibly help UK Prime Minister Theresa May to get the Brexit deal through the UK parliament, as they stressed today that reopening the negotiations is not on the table.

    Brexit was never meant to be on the agenda of a gathering of EU leaders in Brussels this week, after heads of government sealed the terms of the UK’s withdrawal at a summit last month. But deadlock in London has turned it into one of the most important points of tomorrow’s meeting.

    This evening, May will learn if she is to keep her job in a ballot of her party’s lawmakers, following a challenge attempting to derail her Brexit deal. May pulled a scheduled vote of lawmakers on the terms of withdrawal this week amid severe opposition. She’s now looking for “reassurance” from the EU that the backstop intended to prevent a hard border with Ireland won’t be a permanent resting place.

    By Zosia Wanat.

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  • UK airport slots sought by US in negotiations on post-Brexit aviation
    07 December 2018
    The US is pushing for the UK’s airport slot regime to be overhauled after Brexit to give greater opportunities to American airlines.

    The US Department of Transportation has requested a “cooperative dialogue” with the UK to open up airport capacity to new entrants.

    The UK and US last month agreed the terms of an aviation agreement. It replaces an EU-US open skies agreement which will no longer apply to the UK after Brexit.

    By Matthew Holehouse and Maxwell Fillion.

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  • EU's no-deal Brexit plans offer few answers to worried businesses
    14 November 2018
    Any companies hoping the EU would come up with answers for how to avoid potentially huge upheaval to business in a no-deal Brexit will be disappointed.

    Measures outlined in yesterday’s EU contingency communication are a sign the European Commission will do little to mitigate the fallout from such a scenario,

    Airlines, logistics companies and agricultural exporters all still face dramatic disruptions if the UK leaves the bloc in March 2019 without a withdrawal agreement. And any measures the EU introduces to mitigate this will be temporary and designed to end within months, rather than providing a road to a future relationship.

    By Michael Acton and Matthew Holehouse.

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  • EU amends post-Brexit tariff split to address trading partners' objections
    08 November 2018
    The EU has amended its proposal to split out UK import quotas after Brexit in reaction to concerns expressed by dozens of World Trade Organization members, MLex has learned.

    But the slight adjustments to import volumes are unlikely to satisfy critics including the US, Canada, China and Japan, according to EU officials familiar with the proposal.

    In July, the EU and the UK notified the WTO of their proposals to divide up dozens of low-tariff quotas for agricultural goods according to trade flows recorded in recent years. They have coordinated to leave their combined import quotas unchanged after the UK’s departure from the bloc.

    By Joanna Sopinska.

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  • Russia blocks UK's post-Brexit tariff proposal at WTO
    24 October 2018
    The UK’s proposal to split its import quotas from those of the EU after Brexit has drawn an official objection from Russia at the World Trade Organization, MLex has learned.

    An objection from a single trading partner means that the WTO can’t certify the proposal until the problem is resolved. It might also force the UK to undergo the full procedure for changing its rates, rather than the simplified “rectification” procedure it has so far pursued.

    In a notice to the global trade body, Russia stated that the draft UK schedule of tariffs and quotas was inconsistent with its obligations “under several basic WTO provisions,” MLex understands.

    By Zosia Wanat and Joanna Sopinska.

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