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The UK and the EU negotiate their future relationship - expert comment

Professor Abhinay Muthoo, negotiation expert and Dean of Warwick in London, comments on the start of the UK-EU negotiations.

"The post Brexit negotiations between the UK and the EU on their future relationship, and in particular on a Free Trade Agreement, will be a complex set of negotiations over multiple issues, with multiple factors at play. Both sides have already begun making statements on what they respectively wish to achieve from these negotiations. It is clear from these statements that they are as far apart as one can be. But that is not unusual before any negotiation.

"For example, one sticking point in the negotiations will be EU’s insistence that, in order to strike a deal, the UK’s rules and standards in certain areas must be closely aligned with those of EU’s. The UK has said it will not agree to that. There are many issues to be discussed in these negotiations, with the two parties putting different weights on the different issues. This allows for different trade-offs, and thus room for compromise, which is key to reaching a deal. All this said, it is clearly going to be a challenging and tough set of negotiations, over the coming months."

2 March 2020

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