On Wednesday, ITV’s political editor stated a Brexit trade deal could potentially be on the cards following both sides making progress on fishing rights; the tweet follows another tweet which said there was no chance of an accord before Christmas.
“A UK source now says agreement on a UK/EU trade deal is again possible tomorrow”, said ITV’s political editor Robert Peston in a tweet just before midnight on Tuesday. “Presumably because, says a separate source, there was movement late tonight on access to the 6-12 mile (offshore) zone, ocean fishing and the sanctions regime after the interim period of moving towards new quotas”.
Britain is making a last minute “final push” to strike a Brexit trade deal with the European Union despite there being deep rifts over fishing rights, said Michel Barnier, EU’s chief negotiator.
Earlier on Tuesday, Peston had tweeted, there was very little chance of a Brexit trade deal before Christmas, although one cannot rule out the possibility of an accord being hammered out in time for the British parliament to ratify it before December 31.
Britain will complete its departure from the EU on December 31 when its current free trade arrangements expire. For months, both sides have struggled to define a new trade relationship which covers everything from trade to energy and transportation.
While the UK wants to stop the EU’s access to its fishing waters across a span of three years, the latter has proposed a span of six years to allow its fishing industry to adjust to the changing environment.
Last minute tortuous negotiations saw additional pressure after a more contagious variant of the Wuhan coronavirus emerged in Britain with many countries, including the EU suspending travel from Britain.