State of play of negotiations with the UK: President Juncker and Chief Negotiator Michel Barnier debrief European Parliament

On Tuesday, 3 October, both President Jean-Claude Juncker and Michel Barnier, the European Commission’s Chief Negotiator for Article 50 negotiations, debriefed the Plenary Session of the European Parliament in Strasbourg on the state of play of negotiations with the United Kingdom. In his speech, President Juncker referred to Prime Minster May’s speech in Florence as “conciliatory,” underlining that work still remains to be done, and saying that “Until now, I can’t say that we are ready to enter the second phase of negotiations.” President Juncker stressed that “with the departure of the United Kingdom, a page in history is turned. And another one is about to be written to decide the future that we want to build at 27… Out future is not Brexit, it’s Europe.” In this context, President Juncker also recalled the Roadmap for a More United, Stronger and More Democratic Union published on occasion of his 2017 State of the Union Address, which sets out the EU’s agenda for coming months. Michel Barnier recalled that the three main topics of the discussions on the UK’s orderly withdrawal – citizens’ rights, the financial settlement, and Ireland – “go together. They are inseparable.” A fifth round of negotiations will take place in Brussels next week. Michel Barnier reminded the Parliament that “our attitude is to remain resolutely constructive because we want to succeed. The sooner we agree on the principles of the orderly withdrawal, the sooner we can discuss the future partnership.”