The European Union aims to complete this year the preparatory work for its future relationship with the U.K. and to come up with a road map that could help speed the pace of the Brexit negotiations, Bloomberg News reported, citing two EU officials familiar with the matter.
The officials said that as early as this month, the European Council will start working with the European Commission on key points, as the EU plans to have the road map ready by December so that the Brexit talks can move on to trade as soon as Britain gives a sufficient offer on divorce settlement.
EU leaders will also call this week for the start of "internal preparatory discussions" regarding a future trade pact with the U.K. and transitional arrangements, according to the report. These preparations will include 15 policy areas such as financial services and anti-dumping.
Michel Barnier, the EU's chief Brexit negotiator, said last week that talks are deadlocked over what the U.K. will pay to the EU when it leaves the bloc.
Meanwhile, British Prime Minister Theresa May's government fears that the Brexit talks would collapse without a clear sign from EU leaders this week that the negotiations will advance to trade, Bloomberg News reported Oct. 16.