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Brexit trade deal means `freedom', but at a cost: the arguments will be far from over - Sam Lowe - Guardian
Where the UK did attempt to maximise trade opportunities, its efforts largely fell flat. British negotiators failed to convince the EU to reduce the frequency of border checks on food products imported from the UK (such as langoustines and lamb); failed to ensure that UK professional qualifications would be recognised across the EU; failed to include provisions allowing UK-based testing centres to continue certifying products for the EU market; and failed to win the argument in favour of allowing imported foreign parts (such as car components) from Japan and elsewhere to count towards the agreement's rules-of-origin thresholds, which determine whether a product can be traded tariff-free or not.

... greater liberalisation of services trade, for example, would at the very least require the UK to accept freedom of movement. And negotiating with the union from the outside will remain an unpleasant experience: just ask the Swiss.



Schengen is toast!
by epochepoque on Mon Dec 28th, 2020 at 05:13:55 PM EST
The UK Falls Into an Elephant Trap of Its Own Making on Brexit - Anton Spisak
That the UK is prepared to drop most of its offensive interests in the hope of getting away with fewer obligations reflects a deep hostility in Downing Street towards any agreement that would tie Britain into constraints on its regulatory sovereignty.

... Worse, this strategy will put the UK in a very hard position in the endgame of the negotiation. If there is one lesson that the prime minister and his advisors ought to learn from the tortuous saga of the Brexit years, it is that Brussels excels at dominating the process. It will shy away from making any big concessions until the clock runs out. Then, when it confronts the prime minister with an oven-ready treaty text prepared in advance by EU lawyers, Boris Johnson will find himself facing a stark choice between accepting a bare-bones trade deal--asking the UK to commit to rules on state-aid but without any quid pro quo on the UK's offensive interests--and a disruptive no-deal. Having abandoned his offensive asks by that point, he will have little bargaining power at that crucial phase of the negotiation.



Schengen is toast!
by epochepoque on Mon Dec 28th, 2020 at 05:33:00 PM EST
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