Brexit deal won’t be struck until the autumn, predicts BBC’s Europe editor

PUBLISHED: 11:27 28 May 2020 | UPDATED: 11:27 28 May 2020

Katya Adler discusses Boris Johnson's change of a post-Brexit trade deal. Photograph: YouTube.

Katya Adler discusses Boris Johnson's change of a post-Brexit trade deal. Photograph: YouTube.

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A deal between the European Union and the British government is unlikely to be struck until the autumn, the BBC’s Europe editor has claimed.

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In a case of déjà vu for politics, there may only be a breakthrough in the Brexit process later this year, much like when compromise was reached with the Withdrawal Agreement last year.

But that too runs the risk of being lost should there be a second wave of the coronavirus, which would distract European leaders.

Speaking at a UK in a Changing Europe event, Katya Adler said that a “narrow agreement” could come by the end of the year.

She said: “All of the predictions are for a very hot autumn again.


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“And you can say dejá vù from the Brexit negotiations because we had that hot autumn and ended in compromise.

“But again, talking to trade negotiators, they are putting up a warning flag and saying, ‘we’re worried that the EU and the UK seem semi-complacent about doing the deal at the last minute.’ Blinking, whatever you’d like to call it.

“What happens if there is a second wave of COVID in the autumn and the political leaders are completely distracted?”

She continued: “What happens to the fact that what we’re actually doing now, forget all the drama that led up to Brexit itself.

“This is where those difficult decisions are actually made about our future relationship with the EU.

“The previous agreement was all about leaving, this is about the future.”

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