Brexit Britain set for '50 years' of non-stop negotiations with EU to improve current deal

Press quote (Express)
27 January 2021

Charles Grant, Director of the Centre for European Reform, fears the UK still has five key areas that will determine the future relationship between the country and the . Mr Grant looked at European countries outside the EU, like Switzerland, who have been in a constant negotiation limbo with the bloc since the mid-seventies. The political expert forecast  Britain may soon be entering a similar situation and face as much as 50 years of additional talks with Brussels.

Speaking to Ian Mulheirn of the Tony Blair Institute for Global Change, Mr Grant said: “Nothing is really fixed, Britain is out of the EU for a generation and that’s fixed but the future is open to all sorts for questions. 

“I think we’re going to be in non-stop negotiations for at least 50 years with the EU as the Swiss will tell you who started in the mid-seventies and have never stopped negotiating with the EU.

“I think five key questions will determine the nature of the future relationship.

“The first is will the UK diverge or not, it’s won this wonderful freedom to diverge but will it want to exercise that freedom.

“My suspicion is at a symbolic level, it will seem to diverge, but in practice, it won’t diverge a lot but I may be wrong on that.

“Secondly will it try to improve on the terms of the deal but I hope so as it’s a pretty rough deal as the musicians have discovered this week and fisherman have discovered last week.”