Little progress in Brexit negotiations

As expected, EU-27 Heads of State and Government were unable to establish sufficient progress in the Brexit negotiations at the end of October. The earliest possible opportunity to launch a new phase for discussing the future relationship will be the next EU summit in December 2017. Following her Florence speech in September, Prime Minister Theresa May had hoped for more positive conclusions from the summit participants until the very last.

Compliance with the European Commission’s two-phase approach is incontrovertible: good progress must first be made on an exit agreement – which essentially means in the areas of financial obligations, Ireland and citizens’ rights. Only then can negotiations be held on future relations. This is also relevant for the planning certainty of workers and companies.

German business also wants there to be a close relationship with the United Kingdom in the future. However, the further development of the European Union takes first place.

Numerous business associations and their member companies have come together in a joint task force steered by BDA and BDI in order to analyse potential dangers of Brexit for economic relations. At the same time, the working group – founded in June 2017 – pursues the objective of developing proposed solutions and supporting companies in their planning.

The joint task force comprises almost 200 members organised in a management body and ten specific thematic project groups. These cover trade in goods, logistics, data/information and communication technology (ICT), taxation and accounting, legislative consequences, climate and energy, market access, movement of persons, social insurance and labour legislation issues as well as Corporate Finance.