Published On: Fri, Nov 24th, 2017

Juncker brands Brexit a 'TRAGEDY' – but refuses to reveal when trade talks could start

The European Commission President did, however, announce he will meet with Prime Minister Theresa May where he expects progress to be made.

EU bosses have refused to engage in Brexit trade talks with the UK, instead insisting Mrs May and her negotiators first must satisfy their demands on EU citizens’ rights, the so-called divorce bill and the Irish border.

Mrs May will also meet with European Council President Donald Tusk, where she is expected to offer £40 billion to Brussels in order to start trade talks.

Speaking upon arrival at the EU’s Eastern Partnership Summit, Mr Juncker said Brexit talks are “making progress” instead of being in “chaos”.

He added: “Brexit is a tragedy.

“I will meet with the British Prime Minister on December 3 and we will see if there has been sufficient progress.”

In response to being asked a question whether he believes progress will be made, he concluded: “Yes.”

Arriving in Brussels, Mrs May said it was time for the UK and EU to “step forward together”.

She said: “As I say the summit here today is about working with our Eastern partners but, of course, I will be having other meetings.

“I will be seeing President Tusk here today talking about the positive discussions, the positive negotiations we are having.

“Looking ahead to the future deepened and special partnership that I want with the European Union.

“These negotiations are continuing but what I am clear about is that we must step forward together. This is for both the UK and the European Union to move onto the next stage.”

It is expected Mrs May will double her original her divorce settlement offer to around £40bn – which is far below the demands of many EU figures

The Prime Minister has maintained she would not pay above her original offer of £20m, but her position seems to be shifting to help start trade talks.

A spokesman for the Prime Minister also confirmed Mrs May will confirm the UK will pay millions toward European security – even after Brexit.

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