UK Forced to Choose Between Economic Interests, Sovereignty in Brexit Talks

UK government officials dropped the "cake and eat it" approach to the negotiations on the Brexit following the June 8 snap general elections, and are starting to accept the inevitability of a choice between access to the EU single market or political control, local media reported Monday, citing government insiders.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Brexit negotiations officially started on June 19, when UK Brexit Secretary David Davis arrived in Brussels to negotiate the terms with EU’s chief negotiator Michel Barnier.

This file photo taken on March 29, 2017 shows a pro-remain protester holds up an EU flag with one of the stars symbolically cut out in front of the Houses of Parliament shortly after British Prime Minister Theresa May announced to the House of Commons that Article 50 had been triggered in London on March 29, 2017. - Sputnik International
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"We have a problem in that really there are only two viable options. One is a high-access, low-control arrangement which looks a bit like the EEA. The other is a low-access, high-control arrangement where you eventually end up looking like Ceta – a more classic free trade agreement, if you are lucky," an official told The Guardian.

Reports of the Whitehall's changing mood over Brexit since general election was confirmed by at least two other officials at the Department for Exiting the European Union and the Treasury, with ministers forced to choose between prioritizing the country's economic interests or sovereignty, the newspaper reported.

At the same time, a spokesman for the Brexit department denied the claims, stressing that the approach outlined in UK Prime Minister Theresa May's Lancaster House speech remained the country's official strategy, according to The Guardian.

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