Boris Johnson said it is ‘’very very likely” that the United Kingdom would not enter a trading pact with the European Union, increasing the likelihood of a no-deal Brexit ahead of Sunday deadline.
The Prime Minister said he was “hopeful” that progress could be made in negotiations, but emphasized that two sides stood their ground on the so-called level playing field and fisheries.
President Ursula von der Leyen of the European Commission sent a stern warning to the representatives of 27 nations as the summit in Brussels ended today.
Ms von der Leyen told EU leaders that the ”likelihood of no deal is higher than that of a deal,” an EU official told Reuters.
Von der Leyen admitted at a press conference today that “positions remain apart on fundamental issues.”
She said that on Sunday the two sides must determine “whether we have conditions for an agreement, or not”.
She further commented: ”One way or the other, in less than three weeks, it will be new beginnings for old friends.”
Earlier, Mrs. von der Leyen said that the UK would be able to determine whether to follow suit any time the EU changes its rules, though if it refused the bloc would adapt the conditions for access to its markets.
But she also threatened the UK, saying that on a case-by-case basis, the EU would like to change Britain’s entry to the single market if it did decide to ignore Brussels’ rules.
UK officials are concerned that the EU will see Britain being ‘penalized’ with tariffs for not mirroring their laws and leaving the UK without power.