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Johnson's umpteenth threat to the EU on Brexit has a lot of 'posture'



As if hearing rain. The European Union (EU) has reacted to the new ‘tantrum’ by British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, as expected by the market consensus: he has rolled his eyes and declared that the talks on the post-Brexit trade agreement are continuing and that they will travel to London next week. Complying with the self-imposed deadline, the 'premier' has issued a public statement this Friday in which he has warned that London will prepare so that commercial relations with the community bloc are more similar to those it maintains with Australia as of 1 January. A euphemism to come to say that you will not have dealt with the community club.

After the events, analysts call for calm: Johnson's gesture is mere posture and is part of the predictable. "It is normal that threats are made to break the deck in any business relationship"Berenberg experts say. "Johnson's message appears to be more of a negotiating tactic in hopes of closing a deal than a genuine desire to end the talks immediately," they add. Indeed, the thrust of the prime minister's message is that the country should prepare for a hard Brexit, rather than declaring that it breaks the current negotiations. Something that, in the opinion of the experts of the German entity, "is not news" or represents a change since "both parties are preparing for this scenario."

"The British reaction seems designed as part of a perfectly orchestrated choreography"writes Neil Wilson, an analyst at Markets.com. This outcome is part of the predictable for most experts, you just need to see the moderate impact that the pound has had, and investors have interpreted it as "a move by Johnson for fissures to open between member states (Germany and France in particular) and for the EU to finally break down and conform to the UK," Wilson warns. The expert qualifies the gesture of "political maneuvering", for the population, "while the talks are in progress."

However, it warns that "The 'premier' is not completely bluffing". "Britain would accept a 'no deal' because politically Johnson is receiving so much criticism about the pandemic that he has no room to disappoint the country over Brexit. In this sense, he underlines that Johnson has already begun to recover in health and blame the other, since in his message he has made an effort to emphasize that he does not abandon the negotiations, but hopes that the EU will present him an acceptable agreement for his country and only then will you listen to what they have to say.


The positions of London and Brussels remain far apart in key areas for the success of the talks, such as guarantees to ensure fair competition between British and EU companies, fisheries or the governance of the future agreement. “If the UK softens its position so that the level playing field and governance issues can be resolved, we hope that both sides will find a compromise on the economically almost irrelevant issue, but symbolically important, of fishing. But, ultimately, the ball remains in the field of London ", warn from Berenberg.

The EU already stated on Thursday its intention to intensify negotiations with the United Kingdom, with the aim of reaching an agreement around the end of October. "What I have proposed to the British team is to negotiate intensively in the little time we have left to achieve, around the end of October, the agreement that we want, not at any price, but the agreement that we want and that European leaders want, "said the EU negotiator, Michel Barnier, at a press conference during the European summit held in Brussels.

At that meeting, the Heads of State and Government of the Twenty-seven addressed the state of the talks on the relationship between London and Brussels after Brexit, a dialogue in which positions remain separated in fundamental areas, despite the fact that the next 1 From January, Community legislation will cease to apply in British territory and the United Kingdom will be, definitively, a third country.

However, the deal should close well before the end of the year, in the coming weeks, so that between November and December the parliamentary ratification of the convention is carried out in the United Kingdom and the European Union, so that the pact can enter into force at the turn of the year, when the transition will have concluded of Brexit.

Barnier insisted that the community club will remain available "until the last business day" to give negotiations "every option to succeed". Experts believe that this has not changed and that both sides "continue to work towards an agreement with the date of the informal meeting of heads of state in Berlin scheduled for November 16 as a watershed moment." "The EU has always declared the end of October as its deadline," they indicate from MUFG. "And we believe this will be the result," they round off.

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