Three days of intensive behind-the-scenes Brexit talks concluded Thursday in London.
Britain’s chief negotiator David Frost and the European Union’s chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier and their teams had been locked in informal discussions in the British capital since Tuesday.
No details were issued by Westminster or Brussels on what had been discussed or whether there had been any significant breakthroughs.
Downing Street said it will not be issuing a communique about the informal talks. It was confirmed that the next round of formal negotiations between both sides will take place in London between July 20 and July 24.
The Financial Times (FT) in London reported that the informal negotiating round was aimed at giving both sides some breathing space to try to enter what one EU official called the “conversation chamber” of real negotiation.
The FT said there seemed to be reason to hope the two sides can enter into substantive discussions about future EU-UK trade arrangements.
Britain ended its membership of the EU on Jan. 31 and is currently half way through an implementation period ending Dec. 31.
During this period, Britain is continuing to follow EU rules. Britain has officially announced that it will not seek an extension to the implementation period.