07/02/2019 - No-Deal Planning Stepped Up By EU

GBP

Brexit again dominated the headlines yesterday after EU summit chairman Donald Tusk said he had abandoned hope that Brexit might be stopped and said on Wednesday his priority was now to avert a “fiasco” in 50 days if Britain crashes out without a deal.

Theresa May has spent the past two days having talks about Brexit with Northern Ireland's five main political parties at Stormont whilst attempting to reassure people she can secure a Brexit deal that avoids a hard border. Today May will meet EU officials in Brussels with a mandate from lawmakers to rework the withdrawal treaty she agreed with the Union in November.

Tusk and Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar both echoed other European leaders in ruling out change to the text, including the Irish “backstop” — the protocol which parliament roundly rejected last month. Tusk, the European Council president, said, however, that the EU must step up planning for Britain leaving on March 29 without having a legal agreement.

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