Crunch Time for Britain in EU Negotiations

Author: Corey McDowell - Economics Editor

Published: 14 Oct 2019

Last Updated: 1 Feb 2023


Pressure is growing on Prime Minister Alexander “Boris” Johnson to give more ground in order to secure a deal with the European Union.

Progress has been made in UK-EU negotiations, but pressure is growing on Prime Minister Alexander “Boris” Johnson to cede ground in order to secure a deal in time for the summit of EU leaders on Thursday. The EU’s chief negotiator, Michel Barnier, has described Mr Johnson’s proposals around customs in Northern Ireland as “fiendishly complex”, and the European Commission has stated “a lot of work remains to be done”. This comes on the back of positive talks between Mr Johnson and the Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar last week, which had thrown Britain a lifeline.

Assuming a deal is struck, Mr Johnson could return home and present the document to the House of Commons on Saturday but Parliament is not guaranteed to pass it and it is still very uncertain whether a deal will be agreed at all. It is rare for the House of Commons to be sitting on a weekend and this Saturday will be the first since the Falklands War back in 1982. Does this mean we can expect something of substance and some breaking news come the weekend? 

Sterling Rebounds

Within 24 hours of the Johnson-Varadkar meeting, Sterling jumped against the Euro to €1.14766, a rise of 2.59%. It also strengthened against the US Dollar by 3.78%, reaching $1.26682. Since then, both these values have dropped slightly respectively after the latest reality check from the EU. 

GBP - USD Exchange Rate www.XE.com

Gold In Need of a Recovery

These currency fluctuations are translated into the value of gold, with a strengthening in the Pound complementing a fall in the sterling price for gold per troy ounce.

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