Brexit Negotiators Will Look at Terms of Divorce Before Future Relationship

Those were, he said, the rights of expatriate citizens and problems of a new EU-UK border, notably cutting across Ireland.

N. Ireland is expected to be dealt with early on, between Oliver Robbins, UK prime minister's Sherpa, her chief diplomatic advisor and number two in the negotiations after Davis from the UK side and European Commission's Deputy Chief Negotiator Sabine Weyand on the EU-27 side. He stated that he would favour a solution which would make it less appealing to be outside than inside the EU.

He said: "Continued trading relationships with established global partners are therefore paramount, as is the need for frictionless trade with the European Union".

Davis, a veteran Eurosceptic, told Barnier that his team aimed to maintain a "positive and constructive tone" during the talks. Barnier said that while it was not about "punishment" or "revenge", the consequences of the UK's decision to leave the European Union were "substantial" and ought not to be underestimated. "And the consequences are substantial".

Mr Hammond has said the United Kingdom should "prioritise protecting jobs, protecting economic growth and protecting prosperity".

A detailed paper will then be published on Monday, Mr Davis confirmed.

The aim is to make sufficient progress to get leaders of the other 27 European Union countries to agree to move on to talks on a future relationship with Britain, including a trade deal, he said. "That is what I said to David today". "That is why we will work all the time with the United Kingdom, and never against the United Kingdom". There will be no hostility on my side. He did not mention a third European Union priority - that Britain settle a bill of tens of billions of euros before it leaves in 21 months.

Ireland has been part of the European Union since 1973 and has had a free-flowing border with Northern Ireland since the Good Friday Agreement in 1998 that ended 30 years of sectarian violence in Northern Ireland, known as "The Troubles".

Barnier said after welcoming Davis that it was important to tackle uncertainties caused by Brexit.

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He added that today's aim was to identify and prioritise a timetable.

The Brexit negotiations started as International Trade Secretary Liam Fox met U.S. trade representative Robert Lighthizer in Washington.

"This is a technically hard issue but it is one which I am certain is soluble, although it will probably take us until the end of the process when we have already decided what our customs and free trade arrangements are".

"Now, we have a shared responsibility to deliver quick and substantive progress".

When asked whether agreeing to this schedule was a sign of the weakness of Britain's negotiating position, Davis said: "It is not how it starts but how it ends".

Davis said that he is determined to reach a Brexit deal "that works for the whole of the United Kingdom".

He also said that "a fair deal is possible and far better than no deal".

"Ultimately, if the Government is really out to get the best deal for Britain, they must be open to compromise on more than just the timetable of the talks, and start putting our economic prosperity at the heart of their negotiating strategy", he said.

Referring to the "difficult, even impossible situation" created by the indecisive election, he added: "here, those who created such chaos would have long since gone".

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