Spain Foreign Minister Arancha González Laya has lashed out at the UK when she heard claims that the Brexit trade deal between the UK and the EU was about British sovereignty, as she reacted harshly to Sky News’ Niall Paterson saying, “it’s not about sovereignty, it’s about interdependence”.
Ms González Laya rejected the sovereignty ideology, claiming that trade deals are about “managing our interdependence,” while extending her anger to claims the UK could be “bound to EU rules” after the end of the transition period if agreements are not chosen correctly.
Ms González Laya told Sky News, “I have done many trade deals in my life, and trade deals are not made to assert one’s independence. They are made to manage our interdependence. This is what is at stake here.
“This trade deal we are building is not about asserting sovereignty, trade deals are not made to do that. The UK and EU are interdependent, so let’s build a deal that reflects that interdependence.”
“This will have a stark consequence to our economies if there is no deal. The costs will be high if we do not have an agreement. We don’t want that. We want to make sure we not going to lower standards. Let’s come up with a mechanism to make sure of that.
“Let’s agree that we are not competing unfairly with each other,” the Spain Foreign Minister added.
Speaking on December 31 as the deadline for the transition period, Ms Gonzalez Laya told Sky News, “It’s going to be very difficult. The date of 1 January was set by the UK. If there wasn’t an agreement it would leave it without an agreement. The ball is in the UK’s court.”
When Mr Paterson raised the issue of the UK threatening to deploy the Navy in the channel to stop Eu fishing vessels, Ms Gonzalez Laya said, “This is not serious or needed. I just think this is all for the gallery.”