EU trade commissioner says bloc will do post-Brexit free trade deal with UK ‘for sure’

 

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 Cecilia Malmstrom’s comments about striking a free trade deal with the UK represent a major boost for Theresa May

The European Union will strike a free trade deal with the United Kingdom after Brexit “for sure”, the bloc’s trade commissioner has said in a major boost for Theresa May.

Mrs May has previously said she would be willing to walk away from Brexit negotiations without securing a deal if Brussels sought to punish the UK by imposing unfair trade tariffs.

But Cecilia Malmstrom, the EU Commissioner for Trade, has now said the bloc will reach a free trade agreement with the UK after its divorce from Brussels.

The statement represents a major victory for Mrs May who has said that the offer of an unfavourable trade deal with the EU would prompt her to quit talks.

She has insisted that “no deal for Britain is better than a bad deal”.

The Prime Minister’s tough negotiating stance was not welcomed by Brussels with European leaders insisting they would not be “intimidated” by the threat to walk away from negotiations.

Ms Malmstrom told a conference in Copenhagen on Thursday: “It’s uncharted territory but I’m sure we will solve it. We will have a free trade agreement, that is for sure.”

When asked again whether she was certain, Ms Malmstrom said: “Of course”.

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