Prime Minister Boris Johnson has set the deadline for October 15 if a deal is to be reached by December 31, when the transition period in which the UK remains in the single market ends. But French European Affairs Minister Clement Beaune said the Brussels bloc and the UK must reach an agreement on their post-Brexit relationship by early November.
“We must not lose our calm in the final days of negotiations because that is sometimes when bad concessions are made.”
It comes after Mr Johnson told French President Emmanuel Macron he would explore all avenues for a trade deal with the EU, but said progress to close important gaps must be made in the coming days.
But talks have stalled, especially on fisheries, as France expresses concerns over its own access to UK waters in the event of a no-deal Brexit.
However, this morning, the French Minister for the Sea said that French fishermen would be better off without a deal rather than accepting “unacceptable” proposals from Britain during the Brexit fisheries negotiations.
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The EU and Britain are in tight negotiations to reach a post-Brexit trade deal before the year-end deadline.
Fishing is one of the three main stumbling blocks.
The EU wants to ensure consistent fishing rights in UK waters, an important issue for France where coastal fishing communities have political influence.
But Britain wants an agreement closer to that of non-EU Norway, where quotas are set every year.
Ms. Girardin added: “We are preparing for all eventualities, and therefore also for a no-deal. France is preparing to support its fisheries and the entire industry.
“European tools will have to be put in place for this.”