Brexit latest news: Negotiations resume in London today – LIVE updates
BREXIT negotiations will resume in London today when the EU’s chief negotiator Michel Barnier arrives for face-to-face talks.
The last round of talks last week ended a day early in Brussels because of deep divides between the UK and EU.
Follow our Brexit live blog below for all the latest updates…
SANCTIONS ON RUSSIA AND SAUDI
Dominic Raab will today set out new powers aimed to freeze assets and ban visas for those involved in serious human rights abuses
In a statement to MPs the Foreign Secretary will name the first foreign citizens to be hit by the new post-Brexit sanctions regime.
Government officials have been targeting individuals in Russia, Saudi Arabia and North Korea under Britain’s version of the 2012 U.S Magnitsky Act, the FT reports.
The act was named after a Russian lawyer who died in prison in Moscow during 2009 after accusing officials of tax fraud.
The Foreign Office says the sanctions will target “the world's worst human rights violators and abusers, and those complicit in their crimes”.
Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said: “This is a clear example of how the UK will help to lead the world in standing up for human rights
BREXIT TALKS RESUME
Brexit negotiations are to resume in London today when the EU’s chief negotiator Michel Barnier arrives for face-to-face talks.
The last round of talks ended a day early last week in Brussels because of deep divides in the both sides' approach amid fears of a no-deal.
Barnier said after ending the negotiations last Thursday that “serious divergences remain”.
His UK counterpart David Frost said there were “significant differences” that meant the sides were still searching for basic “principles underlying an agreement”.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel said after taking over help of the EU's rotating presidency last week that both her country and the 27-nation bloc “should prepare for the case that an agreement is not reached”.
NEW BREXIT CUSTOMS IT SYSTEM 'WILL FALL DOWN'
The new Brexit IT system is about to face SEVEN TIMES the number of customs declarations it was designed for.
An as of yet untested version of the Goods Vehicle Movement Service (GVMS) was created before the EU referendum and HMRC has been moving users to it since August 2018.
It was originally meant to process 60 million customs declarations, but post brexit it will need to support 400 million due to the Northern Ireland Protocol, according to the Telegraph.
Manufacturing leaders are calling the move “very late” and say the new “overly bureaucratic” system “will fall down” as businesses “won't have the capacity or capital to deal with it”.
POLISH MEP ADMITS EU IS 'STRUGGLING'
A Polish MEP has said that more countries will leave the union if member states are taken for granted.
Professor Zdzislaw Krasnodebski said the bloc was at a dangerous crossroads due to coronavirus.
He told the Express: “We now have this pandemic crisis which also makes weaker states weaker and stronger ones stronger.
“I think in many cases Brussels has been struggling to exert pressure on member states.”
Prof Krasnodebski said he could see “a great amount of rationality” in British determination not to be bound by EU regulations after the end of the year.
WATCHDOG WARNS AGAINST UK LEAVING EU ANTI-CRIME DEALS
An anti-crime watchdog has warned that Brexit poses risks to the international fight against terror if we leave the EU anti-crime deals.
The police watchdog said they were “deeply concerned” about the UK's ability to deal with terrorism if it doesn't have access to the EU databases post Brexit.
Biometrics commissioner Paul Wiles said losing access to EU mechanisms to exchange suspects, criminal records, fingerprints and DNA data would be “detrimental” and pose “risks” to UK law enforcement domestically too.
MACRON KICKS OFF AT BARNIER OVER FISHERIES
Macron has scolded EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier over compromising with the UK over fisheries.
RTE's Europe Editor, Tony Connelly, reported a heated exchange between the pair.
Connelly said: “Barnier apparently had a fairly difficult meeting with the Group of Eight fishing countries, of which Ireland and France are a member.
“They told him to stick to the mandate and warned him it is not the time to comprise on their red lines on fisheries.”
The UK is hoping to get a similar deal that Norway has with the EU that involves annual share-out of quotas.
TODAY'S FAILURE COULD LEAD TO UK BEING KICKED OUT OF THE EUROPEAN MARKET
The EU and the UK have failed to meet their June 30 deadline for completing assessments of each other’s regulatory regimes for financial services, which would then allow mutual market access post-Brexit.
This has sparked fears that the UK could be frozen out of the European Market while countries are all dealing with the economic fallout of coronavirus.
This would make the UK's economic recovery even more difficult as we could be left with a no-deal Brexit by the end of the year.
If that were to happen at the same time as an expected second wave of coronavirus then we would be in serious trouble.
SCOTTISH SUPPORT FOR INDEPENDENCE SOARS AS BREXIT TALKS STALL
Support for Scottish independence has now pushed ahead of support for the Union over a sustained period of opinion polling, according to expert Professor Sir John Curtice.
The polling comes as Scottish ministers have expressed concerns that Westminster will make a power grab against the Scottish parliament in the coming months.
20,000 TROOPS COULD BE CUT AND MARINES DISBANDED AS PART OF NEW DEFENCE REVIEW
Defence chiefs have drawn up plans to slash the army by a quarter and reduce the Royal Marines to a bit part as part of Boris Johnson's defence and security review.
The drastic “doomsday” cuts, that would also close airfields and take helicopters out of service, were drawn up in response to Treasury demands that Whitehall departments map out cuts of 5% or more as part of the government's comprehensive spending review.
In the worst-case scenario: Army manpower would fall from 74,000 to 55,000, The Royal Marines commando brigade would be disbanded, losing its artillery, engineers and landing craft.
Royal Navy minesweepers would also be sold off and the RAF would shut several airbases and shed its fleet of Hercules transport planes and small Puma helicopters.
Security sources say that Dominic Cummings is attracted to the proposal to slash the size of the army and pump money into cyberwarfare, space and artificial intelligence.
98 PER CENT OF BRITS SAY THEY WANT TO 'BUY BRITISH'
98 per cent of respondents to an Express poll said they want to buy British to send a message to Brussels as talks stall.
Readers were asked: “Is it time for UK consumers to buy British and show EU we won't be pushed around?”
People who took part in the poll were eager to have packaging that makes it clear that products are made in the UK.
NORTHERN IRISH COULD FACE FOOD SHORTAGES DUE TO BREXIT
People in Northern Ireland could miss out on vital food products after Brexit because of proposed check points in the Irish Sea.
Downing Street has said more regulatory checks will be needed on some goods entering the country from the rest of the UK, with the expansion of infrastructure to carry out sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) screening of animals and food products.
Irish port bosses have voiced their concerns about an ongoing lack of certainty about what will be required come January 2021, as proposals contained in the UK government’s command paper on the issue had not yet been agreed by the EU.
SNP HITS OUT AGAINST BORIS' INTERNAL MARKET PLANS
Cabinet plans to enshrine a UK “internal market” after Brexit would seriously undermine devolution, according to Scottish constitution secretary Michael Russell.
Russell argued that forcing Scotland into an internal market would undermine Scotland's autonomous responsibilities in a “power grab” from Westminster.
Russell wrote to Gove to express concerns that unpublished proposals “ignore the reality and history of devolution” and that they would be opposed by the Scottish government.
He said: “The Tories know they can't win an election to the Scottish parliament so have come up with a scheme to undermine it instead.
TREASURY BUYS EUROS AHEAD OF BREXIT
The Bank of England has been buying so many Euro's that we now have more Euro than US dollars in our foreign currency reserves.
Campaigners for a new Brexit referendum say that the numbers released by the BoE show that the government was betting on the stability of the euro even as MPs push for a clean break with the EU.
The move is believed to be as insurance against the instability of the dollar and fears over the handling of Brexit.
Foreign currency reserves in euros rose to $57.53bn at the end of June, up from $47.95bn two years earlier.
‘SERIOUS DIVERGENCES REMAIN’
After weeks of digital and now face-to-face talks, it seems Brexit talks could still be at a stalemate.
Speaking last week, Michel Barnier said“serious divergences remain” and the EU needed its positions “to be better understood and respected” by the UK.
‘IRELAND AND NI AT CENTRE OF BREXIT TALKS’
The question of agriculture and food at the centre of Brexit talks centres largely on Ireland and Northern Ireland, The Irish Times reports.
Business bosses in Northern Ireland and the Irish government are now demanding clarity on agreements that would see Northern Ireland remain part of the UK but uphold EU food standards.
The question is one of a number of tough issues being tackled in final Brexit talks right now.
BRITAIN AND IRELAND COULD CLASH OVER TINY ISLE IN FINAL BREXIT BATTLE
Tensions could flare between Ireland and Britain amid Brexit talks, The Express reports.
Ownership of tiny isolated island Rockall could allegedly put the two countries at loggerheads.
An unearthed report suggests Scottish authorities claimed the rock was under UK ownership, and tried to stop Irish fishermen from setting up there.
Rockall fishing is reportedly a multi-million pound industry
But the Irish government said the island was not subject to an international boundary as it was simply a large, uninhabitable rock in the middle of the ocean, claims backed up by the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (Unclos) 1982.
Irish Deputy Prime Minister Simon Coveney took a firm stance on the issue in June last year and said that Ireland had never recognised British claims to the island.
He said: “We have never recognised UK sovereignty over Rockall and accordingly, we have not recognised a territorial sea around it either. We have tried to work positively with the Scottish authorities and to deal with sensitive issues that flow from it in a spirit of kinship and collaboration.”
FARAGE TELLS LIB DEM BOSS ‘GET A LIFE’
Nigel Farage has told Lib Dem boss Ed Davey to “get a life” for complaining to the police after he was pictured enjoying a pint in a pub following a trip to the US.
Mr Davey accused the Brexiteer of flouting coronavirus quarantine rules and said he had shown a “flagrant disregard” for the safety of others.
But the former Ukip leader, 56, who has just returned from a Donald Trump rally in Oklahoma, hit back: “I have been back 14 days. But, more importantly I have tested. That test said I do not have any signs of the virus at all.”
When asked whether that test meant he was entitled to end his quarantine early, he replied: “Well, you make your own mind up on that.”
Having been told about the complaint to Kent Police by Mr Davey, he replied: “Sad Ed Davey. Needs to get a life.”
BREXIT ‘SHUTOUT DANGER’
The Financial Times reports that UK funds risk being frozen out of the European market at the end of the year.
It says the threat of being shut out “has risen after Brexit negotiators missed a key milestone aimed at securing market access for the City of London”.
“We have got enough on our plate with the Covid-19 recovery and understanding if markets have got ahead of the economic indicators,” warned Patrick Thomson, CEO of JPMorgan Asset Management’s business in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.
He told the FT: “Given the pressure the asset management industry is already facing in terms of fees and [the need to invest in] technology, to introduce further uncertainty would not be helpful at this time.”
LIB DEM LEADER CALLS COPS ON FARAGE
The Lib Dems' acting leader, has shopped Nigel Farage to the cops for “breaking quarantine” after he sunk a pint in a Kent boozer today.
The Brexit campaigner, 56, was reported to police over claims he should have been self-isolating having returned recently from a Donald Trump rally in America.
Mr Farage could have broken quarantine rules as he was pictured on June 20 at Donald Trump’s campaign rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma, meaning he didn't return to the UK until the next day at the earliest.
If he came back on June 21, it would have meant he visited the pub on while he was meant to still be in quarantine.
The current rules state a person has to remain in isolation for 14 days after returning to the UK from the US.
UK PLANNING FREE GLOBAL TRADE OUTSIDE EU
The UK is planning on worldwide free trade once the EU’s shackles are released on New Year’s Eve 2020.
Even though Britain officially left the EU on January 31, we’re still subject to most of the EU’s rules until December.
But sources have said Britain's first independent trade policy sincecome into force in January 2021.
The government will lobby for low tariffs and greater powers for the World Trade Organisation, according to an exclusive in The Mail on Sunday.
The aim is for the UK to use its year-long presidency of the G7 to work out free trade with like-minded states, such as Australia, New Zealand and Singapore.
According to one Whitehall source, “this is a top priority for the PM”.
‘EU PLOT TO USE NICOLA STURGEON TO HURT UK’
A Danish MEP has claimed Scotland’s first minister’s attempt to join the bloc will be used as a “punch” against Britain.
Following the 2016 referendum, Nicola Sturgeon launched a bid to join the EU if Scotland gains independence in the near future, The Express reports.
But speaking soon after Ms Sturgeon’s move in 2016, one Danish MEP told the Telegraph: “It will be used by people who would like to punch Britain for Brexit and who are trying to derail some of the wishes coming from the United Kingdom.
“It will aid their arguments. Mostly they will do it to annoy London, they are not doing it to help Scotland.”
He added that the more united the UK is “the more chance you have to get concessions from Brussels”.
SNP FEARS ‘BORIS SCOTTISH POWER PLOT’
The Scottish Government's Constitution Secretary Michael Russell has said a new Brexit plan will seriously undermine devolution.
The proposals to create a UK internal market is an attempt to “power grab” from Holyrood, he added.
In a letter to Michael Gove, Mr Russel said the unpublished plans “ignore the reality and history of devolution” and would be opposed by the Scottish Government”.
MICHEL BARNIER ‘LOSING FRENCH CHARM’
The EU’s chief negotiator is “‘losing his French charm.”.
Brexit party chief Michael Tice told The Express: “The EU have got a very good negotiating team.
“They conned us into agreeing on a ridiculous sequencing process.
“They have revealed themselves to be strategically very smart and very confident.
“When things don't go their way, and they are not currently going their way, they lose their temperament and get cross very quickly.
“The EU like to hold all the cards and have the upper hand, that is what they got used to with our previous negotiators, that has now changed now.
“Michel Barnier is suave and sophisticated with this French charm.
“But he is starting to look a little rough around the edges and that is because things are not going their way.”
CARS PRODUCED IN JAPAN TO BE STAMPED 'MADE IN BRITAIN' UNDER PM'S PLANS
Products from Japan or South Korea would be stamped 'Made in Britain', under Boris Johnson’s plan to save the domestic car industry after Brexit.
The idea is an attempt to prevent harsh tariffs that could drive away brands such as Nissan and Toyota and was uncovered in proposals for an EU trade deal.
But many Brexit voters could find the idea “ridiculous” after being promised huge benefits from leaving the EU.
Goods made solely from foreign parts, but assembled in the UK – particularly vehicles and prepared foods and other manufactured goods – would be granted the same exemptions from tariffs as those from UK components.
Alan Winters, professor of economics at the University of Sussex Business School, said company's such as Nissan could leave the UK if it had to pay tariffs.
He told The Independent: “We know that the Japanese are wondering whether they would stay around.
“Brexit is going to be bad news for jobs in lots of dimensions. In this one dimension, the British proposal would help to head off some of those losses.”
Dr Peter Holmes, reader in economics, said: “What the UK government is seeking from the EU on rules of origin is unprecedented.
“To the average Brexit supporter this approach may sound ridiculous and not part of any deal they voted for, but without it Japanese car plants risk facing 10 per cent tariffs on cars made in the UK if they use engines, gearboxes or other components made in Japan.”
BREXIT CAMPAIGNER NIGEL FARAGE IN HOT WATER OVER PUB TWEET
Nigel Farage, well known for his fondness for beer, tweeted a picture of himself in a reopened pub, but was met by a storm of tweeted criticism and suggestions he should still be observing a 14-day quarantine as mandated for people traveling from the United States.
Farage attended a campaign rally for President Donald Trump in Tulsa, Oklahoma on June 20.
Acting Liberal Democrat leader Sir Ed Davey called on police to investigate whether Nigel Farage has broken quarantine rules.
Mr Farage tweetED a photo of himself at 12.23pm today from a Kent pub declaring “12 o'clock, first customer in. Love it.”
However, he insisted he had been back from a trip to the US for two weeks and had tested negative for Covid-19.
Sir Ed wrote to chief constable Alan Pughsley, stating: “I write out of concern that one of your local residents may have broken quarantine rules regarding international travel and is putting lives at risk with a wilful disregard for scientific and medical advice.
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