Among the major sticking points in ongoing trade negotiations between the united kingdom and Brussels are fishing rights. David Frost is firmly standing his ground on a demand for a zonal attachment system while the EU is urging a compromise.
EU diplomats have said there is a possibility of Brussels slapping sanctions on Britain on other areas of commerce if European trawlers were kicked from UK seas. One EU source has suggested that it could be in Britain’s interests to bow into the bloc’s pressure.
They stated: “It’s a huge ask for the EU and it is not such a big supply for the UK, because, in the end, it’s accessibility to waters for access to markets.
“You can not eat fish in the morning, the evening, and during the night.”
An anonymous diplomat told The Telegraph: “There is a clear interest on the UK side since their fleet won’t even have the ability to fish as much as is now being fished in UK waters, and the vast majority of their fish products exported to the internal market.”
Clement Beaune said France will be “intransigent” on fishing and would not be “intimidated” by Britain in the negotiation “match”. France is one of the coastal countries, which has pushed hardest for EU anglers to maintain the access to fish in British waters after a transition period ends at the end of the year.
But the UK’s group of negotiators, led by Mr Frost, is still holding out hope for a deal to be reached in September.
According to diplomatic sources, he told a meeting of national envoys that a deal stays possible. On Wednesday, it appeared that the EU is no longer trying for a Belfast office to oversee trade with Northern Ireland.
Cabinet minister Michael Grove formerly ruled out a request to monitor exceptional arrangements maintaining the area in line with EU rules after Brexit. Time is running out for a free trade deal to be sealed together with Europe before the end of this calendar year, Stormont civil servant Dr Andrew McCormick stated.
He added: “The Commission is no longer pressing for a representational office in Belfast.
“What they are requesting is adequate and proportional oversight.”