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Merkel: British EU immigration cap would have price

AP  |  Berlin 

A future cap on immigration by European Union citizens to would come at a price for the UK's relations with the EU, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said today.

and the are preparing for negotiations on Britain's departure, which Prime Minister formally triggered in late March but will start in earnest after a British next month. May insists that must leave the bloc's single market in order to control immigration.

Merkel said at an event with international labor union officials in that "if the British says that free movement of people is no longer valid, that will have its price in relations with Britain."

"This isn't malicious, but I can't have all the good sides and then say there's a cap of 100,000 or 200,000 citizens, more aren't allowed into Britain - perhaps researchers as well, but no others, please," Merkel said. "That won't work, and then we would have to think about what obstacle we create from the European side to compensate for that," she added.

Nearly 52 per cent of Britons who voted in a referendum last June chose to leave the

"We will, of course, always think in the future relationship of the 48 or 49 percent who didn't back Brexit," Merkel said. She didn't specify how.

The divorce process will be "very, very complicated," Merkel said.

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

First Published: Wed, May 17 2017. 21:32 IST