ibusinesslines.com March 24, 2018

Pharma giants caution United Kingdom government about Brexit impact on drug supply

06 December 2017, 04:01 | Erica Roy

Theresa May's smoke and mirrors Brexit gambit didn't even last an afternoon - it's not difficult to see why

European Commission President Jean Claude Juncker right walks behind British Prime Minister Theresa May prior to addressing a media conference at EU headquarters in Brussels on Monday Dec. 4 2017. British Prime Minister Theresa May and EU Commission P

But the issues of the rights of expatriate citizens and the UK-EU border on the island of Ireland remain fraught, diplomats say.

The British premier told reporters that while there was no deal yet, she is optimistic at the chances of finalizing an accord to prevent what analysts have called a "hard Brexit", or the U.K.'s divorce from the European Union without an agreement on relations.

So what happened? After a weekend of frantic last-minute negotiations, Ireland, the EU27 and the British government had all signed up to an agreement - or at least, a form of words - that they all thought would be signed off on Monday.

Authentic sources claim that once the country makes its exit from the European Union, it would be hard to avail the services of a highly skilled workforce.

A jubilant Donald Tusk hinted that the next stage of talks between the United Kingdom and European Union was imminent and despite attempts to play down a deal over the weekend, advisers around the Prime Minister appeared optimistic. But if the two sides can't come to an agreement on what kind of border will run between (British) Northern Ireland and the (EU) Republic of Ireland, the mid-December summit might not produce a breakthrough. May can not give the DUP what it wants (no border with mainland Britain), while ensuring Dublin also gets no hard border across the island, while abiding by her Brexit promise that Britain will leave the single market and the customs union.

Tusk, the European Council President, was adamant Friday that the Ireland issue must be resolved before any post-Brexit trade discussions can move forward.

Colm Kelpie, who writes on Brexit for the Irish Independent, says Mrs May has "little wriggle room" in her talks with the Democratic Unionists, and expresses amazement that the "DUP was not already on board if the wording of a text was agreed that was acceptable to the Irish Government". "But it is possible to do that today", Coveney told Irish state broadcaster RTE.

Preempting the mid-December summit, the Leave Means Leave group sent a letter outlining several terms, including calling for Britain to be beyond the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice (ECJ) and for no new EU regulations to apply once Britain exits in March 2019. "This is the most preposterous claim".

The coming week brings the negotiations to date to a climax, with disagreements potentially halting the entire process.

After May has left, EU-27 leaders hold Brexit summit.

It could not have looked better for Theresa May as she headed for Brussels yesterday.

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