Former Brexit secretary David Davis said on Wednesday he expected negotiations between the UK and the EU to “re-set” as the deadline for agreeing a deal draws closer, and that there would be “other deals on the table” by November.
Speaking on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, Mr Davis said both sides were “afraid of no deal” and would “get to a point where neither side can agree,” at which point there would have to be “some sort of re-set.”
Mr Davis, who resigned in July as Brexit secretary in protest against what he described as Prime Minister Theresa May’s “soft Brexit” plan, said he did not expect much progress to be made at the two-day informal meeting of EU leaders in Salzburg that begins on Wednesday.
He said the EU tended to wait until the “last possible moment” before shifting its negotiating position, and would begin to soften its stance towards the UK in October or November.
“It’s always when they’ve taken you to the cliff edge,” he said. “It will be November when it’s decided and I think there will be other deals on the table at that point.”
Mr Davis also said he thought the EU was beginning to soften its stance on the “central” Northern Ireland issue. On trade, he said there were “plenty of precedents” for the UK to agree a free-trade agreement with the EU, and there were “ready made versions” on which the negotiators could model a final agreement.
Mr Davis also said he would not vote for Mrs May’s Chequers plan, and that he believed a second Brexit referendum was “against the national interest.”
Get alerts on Brexit when a new story is published