French President Emmanuel Macron‘s statement on the UK’s Brexit stance shows a ‘significant’ difference in viewpoint between the two countries.
That’s according to Alex De Ruyter, the Director of the Centre for Brexit Studies at Birmingham City University. He said:
“The public utterances of the UK government are such that they see it as a process of negotiation. It’s not a process of negotiation. For the EU, if you want to be in the single market, then you have to accept the full freedoms.”
Macron had been meeting with Theresa May to discuss Channel border funding and the move of the Bayeux Tapestry.
Macron’s comments are warning the United Kingdom of the dangers of leaving the EU, De Ruyter says:
“If Britain were to join the EU now or in the future, they would have to join the Euro like any other country. The point is, it’s (the UK) never going to get a better deal than it has now.”
7. The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Phillip Hammond, has revealed that there is still no agreed position in Cabinet of what the end-point of the Government’s Brexit negotiations should be. #Brexit #top10
— Centre for Brexit Studies (@BCU_CBS) January 18, 2018
He also discussed Boris Johnson’s suggestion of a “fixed link” bridge between Dover and Calais at the UK and France’s summit:
“Aside from the point that a 22-mile bridge from Dover to Calais would cost a lot of money, it would probably conflict with the stated objective of spending more money on the NHS.”
Downing Street has since said that there are no plans for a bridge linking France and the UK, but that Johnson was discussing ‘major projects’ relating to the countries.
Macron also said of the relations between the two countries, “we’re making a new tapestry together” – referencing the historic Bayeux Tapestry’s move to the UK after 950 years in France.