There is “zero indication” that Britain will walk away without a Brexit deal, although the next phase of Brexit negotiation talks will be “a bit more difficult” says Angela Merkel.
Speaking during a dinner in Brussels, the German chancellor said there is “zero indication” that Brexit talks will fail and claimed she is in “permanent conversation” with Prime Minister Theresa May.
Her comments followed the Prime Minister’s rejection of a large Brexit divorce bill. Instead May appealed for a deal she could “defend” to the British people.
Merkel went on to say that critics suggesting Theresa May should walk away from the talks were “absurd”. Merkel then said that more progress needed to be made and saying it was “very clear what additional steps need to be taken.”
Merkel told reporters: “I don’t have any reason to believe we are not going to be successful. The ball is not only in Great Britain’s court, it is also in our court at the same time because we are about to enter the phase where we have to put into language, into words, what a non-sufficient adherence to the rules of the single market is.
“Great Britain has not been very clear about the details of that relationship. The European Union 27 may have certain ideas, but we haven’t put it down into clear terms.”
She added: “You get the impression that after a few weeks you already have to announce the final product, and I found that – to be very clear – absurd… What I heard today was a confirmation of the fact that, in contrast to what you hear in the British press, the process is moving forward step by step.”
The EU leaders’ next meeting is expected to take place on 14 – 15 December.