The British left the EU at the end of January. Now it's about how both sides will meet in the future. The EU has determined how it intends to shape its relationship with London.
Brussels (dpa) - The 27 EU countries have marked their red lines on the future relationship with Great Britain. The European Ministers decided in Brussels, according to diplomatic statements, the mandate for the upcoming negotiations with the British, who left the EU at the end of January.
These talks are expected to begin at the beginning of March and are likely to be difficult in the foreseeable future. The focus is on fair competition.
"There must be no social dumping, there must be no environmental dumping," said European Minister of State Michael Roth (SPD) on the future relationship with Great Britain. The French State Secretary Amélie de Montchalin made a similar statement. It is about "protecting the interests of Europeans". There will be controls on future agreements and clauses for sanctions if the agreements are not followed, de Montchalin emphasized.
"We offer a substantial, ambitious, balanced, far-reaching partnership," said State Secretary Andreja Metelko-Zgombic for the Croatian Presidency. The European Union has drawn up a "precisely defined" mandate for this.
Roth, like the French representative, emphasized the great unity with which the 27 EU countries were looking forward to the negotiations with London. "We cannot be divided," said Roth; de Montchalin said: "The unity among us is total."
The 46-page negotiation mandate emphasizes the importance of fair competition, the rules of which must be based on reliable commitments. The intended agreement should maintain common high standards. For state aid, competition, state companies, labor and social standards, environmental standards, climate change, relevant tax issues and other interventions in these areas, there should continue to be similarly high standards with EU standards as a reference.