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EU's Brexit negotiator tells Britain: 'face up to the hard facts'

Reuters  |  STRASBOURG 

(Reuters) - The European Union's negotiator hammered home again on Tuesday that Britain would not retain its current privileges, including on trade, once it leaves the bloc.

The EU and Britain are hoping to seal a deal this month on a transition period after Brexit, and start talks on the future relationship this spring.

But mounting differences over Britain's divorce from the EU have led the bloc to warn repeatedly that time was running out, that the post-transition was not given, and that should be more precise and realistic on what sort of future ties it sought.

"One cannot have at the same time the status of a third country and demand at the same time the advantages of the (European) Union," told a plenary session of the in

"It is time to face up to the hard facts," he added.

Speaking on the same occasion, the of the bloc's executive European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, also reminded there was no time to waste before Britain leaves the bloc, as is due in March 2019.

"It is obvious that we need further clarity from the UK if we are to reach an understanding on our future relationship," Juncker said.

"As the clock counts down, with one year to go, it is now time to translate speeches into treaties, to turn commitments into agreements."

The EU last week snubbed British Theresa May's calls for a special post-deal by offering a free-trade agreement with no special treatment for Britain's mighty financial sector.

(Reporting by and Philip Blenkinsop, Writing by Gabriela Baczynska, Editing by Angus MacSwan)

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Tue, March 13 2018. 16:32 IST