EU summit to say progress ‘still not sufficient’ for Brexit trade deal

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Officials remove the British flag at EU Council in Brussels

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – European Union leaders meeting in Brussels on Thursday and Friday to discuss Brexit will say that progress in talks with Britain is “still not sufficient” to seal a new trade deal, according to a draft summit decision seen by Reuters.

The 27 national leaders are due to tell their negotiator, Michel Barnier, to intensify talks with Britain to reach and implement an agreement from Jan. 1, 2021, but will also decide to step up contingency preparations for an abrupt economic split without a deal to avoid tariffs or quotas.

They will also tell Britain it must implement in full its earlier Brexit divorce treaty with the bloc, according to the draft summit decision prepared in advance of the meeting.

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