Please see below for today’s update on key Brexit news items:

  • Angela Merkel has stated that Britain’s divorce bill must be settled before Brexit discussions can take place. The German government is encouraging Britain to agree a mathematical formula for calculating its European divorce settlement rather than settling on a precise figure. Merkel told the German parliament that British politicians were still living under an “illusion” that the UK would retain most of its rights and privileges once it left the EU. Merkel quoted; “Countries with a third country status – and that’s what Great Britain will be – cannot and will not have the same or even more rights as a member of the European Union”. (The Guardian).
  • Britain’s carmakers have warned that they do not believe a trade deal with the EU will be struck within the next two years and are “sitting on their hands” rather than investing in the UK. (The Guardian).
  • The Financial Times have published a timetable of the “evolution of the EU’s position”, found here.
  • In a vote of confidence in Brexit Britain, the UK FDI inflows soared to $253.7bn (£197bn) in 2016, up from £33bn the previous year, according to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, thus becoming the top destination for inward FDI across Europe and second only to the US in the OECD club of 35 rich economies. (The Telegraph).