Brussels: British Prime Minister Theresa May will meet key European Union (EU) figures on Monday here for talks on Brexit which could determine whether the UK is able to move on to negotiations on trade.
The Prime Minister, accompanied by the Brexit Secretary David Davis, will meet European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker, with Downing Street saying “plenty of discussions” lie ahead, reports the BBC.
It has described the meeting as an “important staging post” on the route to the “crucial” summit with the other 27 leaders in the middle of the month when it hopes trade talks can begin.
The timings of May’s visit marks a deadline set by Donald Tusk, the president of the European Council, for her to come forward with an improved offer on the terms of the UK’s withdrawal from the EU.
The UK is hoping to start talks about a free trade agreement but the EU has said that it will only recommend this can take place when it deems “sufficient progress” has been made on the other issues.
The UK voted for Brexit last year and is due to leave in March 2019, but negotiations between the EU and the UK have not yet reached a breakthrough.
Meanwhile, Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt has warned there will be no Brexit at all unless May was supported, the BBC reported.
His comments came after a series of prominent Conservatives signed a letter calling on May to refuse to settle the UK’s “divorce bill” unless Brussels agrees to a series of demands.
These included ending the European court’s jurisdiction the moment the UK leaves in March 2019.
May has promised that Brexit will end the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice in the UK. But she has suggested its remit might continue during an “implementation period” after this date.