April 27, 2020 / 2:15 PM / a month ago

Brexit talks can still be done within agreed timescale, UK minister says

FILE PHOTO: Britain's Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster Michael Gove speaks at a digital news conference on the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in 10 Downing Street in London, Britain April 4, 2020. Pippa Fowles/10 Downing Street/Handout via REUTERS

LONDON (Reuters) - Talks to strike a deal on a post-Brexit relationship between Britain and the European Union can still be concluded within the agreed timescale, British Cabinet Office minister Michael Gove said on Monday.

Last week, EU’s chief negotiator Michel Barnier said discussions had made little progress and that Britain had set a tight deadline by ruling out an extension to the Brexit transition period beyond the end of 2020.

“We believe it is still entirely possible to conclude negotiations on the timetable that has been outlined,” Gove told a parliamentary committee.

He said the British text for the talks would be published “in a matter of weeks” and that both sides would take stock at the end of June, declining to say whether Britain would walk away if there had been insufficient progress.

Reporting by Elizabeth Piper and Michael Holden

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