Juncker hopes for EU-Britain Brexit deal in November

PA Archive  PA Images               DUP leader Arlene Foster Chief Whip Sir Jeffrey Donaldson then Chief Whip Gavin Williamson and Theresa May

"Canada plus-plus-plus" is also a fuzzy concept that has no formal status in European Union negotiating documents.

"In the meantime, I regret that the commission did not want to do it, because that was the British wish."In the wake of Juncker's nomination as commission president in 2014, Cameron had admitted he would face an uphill struggle to keep Britain in the European Union, claiming that the new European Union chief had been a force for weakening the standing of the member states". "The commission, via chief negotiator Michel Barnier, is working day and night, with the Brits and with itself and the member states, to be able to gather enough progress". "Now you discover new problems nearly daily, on both sides".

A deal needs to be sealed within weeks if the European and British parliaments are to have time to approve it before March. However, the document is expected to be vaguely worded, and with as much positive language as possible to help her sell it at home.

The bloc worries that London would use whatever special trade fix is agreed for Northern Ireland as a building block for the overall future trade relationship to win an unfair competitive edge.

Leo Varadkar is not sure what final form a "Canada-style" deal would take.

Britain wants to regulate the border through a broad agreement on post-Brexit trade ties with the EU.

The diplomat, who has not been named, said: "It will be harder if it all gets stuck and softer if things are going well". The UK is expected to present a new solution next week. If all goes well, another summit will then be called for mid-November.

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European Union negotiators see the outline of a compromise on the Irish border issue which is holding up Brexit talks, EU sources told Reuters on Thursday, raising hopes that a new British offer could unlock a deal.

Brexiteers in the European Research Group (ERG), led by Tory backbencher Jacob Rees-Mogg, say a "No Deal" would not be harmful, but insist the best outcome for Britain is a Canada-style deal. Instead it would describe the arrangement as being "as frictionless as possible".

The document is likely to say that there should be no trade tariffs or quotas with the United Kingdom, diplomats said. This is the battleground between the two sides, according to one of the diplomats.

Mr Eastwood said: "The time to deliver on a deal is now". I was party leader myself, for fifteen years, and I know what the rules of party politics are. Apart from the crucial section on the Irish border, that is nearly finished, the diplomats said.

But he again warned that Dublin would not sign any UK Brexit deal that did not respect the Good Friday Agreement and guarantee no "hard Border" in Ireland.

Mr Coveney's rebuke came as Dublin urged Mrs May to bring forward her proposals to break the deadlock in the Brexit talks over the Northern Ireland border.

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