Weakened Government could undermine Brexit process, Budget Commissioner warns

Pauline Gross
June 10, 2017

European Commission President Jean Claude-Juncker, also said earlier on Friday in Prague that the EU "can open negotiation tomorrow morning at 09.30".

With no official reaction yet from senior figures in Brussels or in national capitals, one European Union official said it was too early to speculate on how the bloc would react to a change in Britain's demands for its withdrawal in 2019 or whether plans for negotiations to open on June 19 would be put on hold.

Protracted negotiations over the formation of a new government - or even a second general election in 2017 - could put back the start of formal talks, squeezing even further the limited time available to forge a complex withdrawal agreement and a separate deal on future trade arrangements.

Tusk said the March 2019 deadline "leaves us with no time to lose".

But nearly exactly a year after the United Kingdom referendum, no one in Europe is remotely clear on what sort of Brexit Britain wants.

"We need a government that is capable of action, which can negotiate Britain's exit... the British need to negotiate their exit but with a weak negotiating partner, there is a danger that the talks are bad for both parties", Oettinger, who is responsible for the European Union budget, told German radio.

The leader of the centre-right EPP group Manfred Weber said May had brought "chaos" and highlighted that although the UK is divided, the European Union is united.

The Association of Professional Staffing Companies (APSCo) warned that the next government should be "especially careful to avoid knee jerk changes to taxation, employment regulation or visa controls" associated with the UK's exit from the EU.

Love her or loathe her, the reality you and your clients face today is we now have a caretaker prime minister who clearly doesn't have the nation's confidence and has plummeted this country into more instability and uncertainty.

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"Two strong partners are sovereign and can more quickly get better results that are acceptable to both sides".

"The clock is ticking for #Brexit. The date for the beginning of negotiations is now unclear".

Hot on the heels of her chancellor Philip Hammond's embarrassing U-turn on taxing the self-employed, Prime Minister Theresa May had her own change of heart and called an early general election. Her huge gamble has backfired spectacularly.

Attention will now focus on whether May can rule with the help of the staunchly pro-Brexit Democratic Unionist Party after they struck a deal on Friday.

European Parliament Brexit pointman Guy Verhofstadt compared the British outcome to former British prime minister David Cameron's ill-fated decision to call last year's Brexit referendum.

Meanwhile, the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) said the election result has generated further uncertainty for business communities, "who are already grappling with currency fluctuations, rising costs, and the potential impacts of Brexit".

His LSE colleague Paul Kelly said the result would weaken May's hand in Brussels, where she is due to attend a summit on June 22 and 23. The result is a hung Parliament, with no party big enough to form an overall majority.

Richard Godmon, tax partner at Menzies, said, "This may mean that it is going to be very hard to get any of the main promises into legislation, so perhaps whilst parliamentary proceedings maybe exciting, actual changes to the tax rules may be limited".

Other reports by GizPress

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