Brexit talks to go ahead on Monday

16 Jun 17

Brexit talks will go ahead on Monday even though it is unlikely the Conservatives will have reached a deal with the Democratic Unionist Party.

The UK government and EU delegates have this week agreed the formal negotiations under Article 50 should proceed on June 19.

The Queen’s Speech is still expected to go ahead on Wednesday. A spokesperson for the DUP told Public Finance this morning media reports saying the deal would be finalised early next week were “probably accurate”.

“There has been positive discussions and we hope a good outcome will be achieved as soon as possible,” he said.

Prime minister Theresa May is looking for the Northern Irish party, which has 10 MPs, to prop up her minority government after the Conservatives lost their majority in the general election earlier this month.

The Department for Exiting the European Union issued a statement yesterday saying: “Michel Barnier, the European Commission’s chief negotiator and David Davis, secretary of state for exiting the European Union, agreed today to launch Article 50 negotiations on Monday June 19.”

Alistair Carmichael, Liberal Democrat MP, said: “If the government cannot even secure a deal with the DUP, how on earth can they get a deal with the EU?”

He called on the prime minister to create a cross-party joint cabinet committee to negotiate the Brexit deal.

It is unusual to delay the Queen’s Speech, but it was delayed for 20 days after election in 2010 when the Conservatives and Lib Dems formed a coalition.

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