Brexit deal needs to be completed by Nov. 21, UK’s Raab says

LONDON (Reuters) – A Brexit deal is now firmly in sight and needs to be finalised by November 21, Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab stated in a week-old letter to a lawmaker printed on Wednesday that briefly despatched sterling sharply larger.

Britain’s Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union Dominic Raab arrives in Downing Street in London, Britain, October 29, 2018. REUTERS/Henry Nicholls

The United Kingdom and European Union have resolved most variations, although the problem of Northern Ireland stays, Raab stated within the letter, dated Oct. 24 and despatched to Hilary Benn, chairman of parliament’s Brexit committee.

“I would be happy to give evidence to the Committee when a deal is finalised, and currently expect 21 November to be suitable,” Raab stated, in response to a request to seem in entrance of lawmakers.

“The end is now firmly in sight and, while obstacles remain, it cannot be beyond us to navigate them. We have resolved most of the issues.”

Asked about Raab’s remarks within the letter, a spokesman for Prime Minister Theresa May reiterated that Britain wished to clinch a Brexit deal as quickly as potential.

“I can’t go beyond repeating, as I have done many times, that we’ve always said we want to conclude this as soon as possible,” he stated.

Sterling GBP=D3 surged as a lot as one p.c versus the greenback to commerce at $1.2831, and versus the euro to 88.43 pence EURGBP=D3 after Raab’s feedback earlier than falling again.

“It’s good news at the margin, but not a solid sign that a deal is close,” Nomura stated in a word to purchasers. It is “just a hint of confidence from Raab that it will be.”

The EU’s Brexit negotiators advised the nationwide envoys in Brussels on Wednesday that technical talks have been nonetheless focuSsing on the Irish problem. They will give one other replace subsequent week and the bloc can even maintain seminars from mid-November to organize for a no-deal Brexit.

But sources in Brussels have been nonetheless hopeful a deal may be sealed subsequent month as soon as the UK has handed its price range. They additionally pointed to rising strain from companies as the top of the 12 months approaches.

With simply 5 months till Britain is because of go away the European Union on March 29, 2019, little is obvious: May has but to clinch a Brexit divorce cope with the EU and rebels in her occasion have threatened to vote down any deal she makes.

Raab stated 4 steps remained: a brief joint UK-EU customs territory; an choice to increase the implementation interval; that any extension was not indefinite; and continued entry for Northern Irish companies to the remainder of the United Kingdom.

Reporting by Guy Faulconbridge; Additional reporting by Gabriela Baczynska; Editing by Andrew MacAskill, Gareth Jones and Peter Graff

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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