Picardo, Cameron, Sefcovic and Albares in Brussels on Thursday. SUR
No deal reached yet over Gibraltar status after more top level EU-UK talks
Gibraltar talks

No deal reached yet over Gibraltar status after more top level EU-UK talks

"The agreement is getting closer," said a joint statement after the EU, UK Spain and Gibraltar sat down for six hours on Thursday in a meeting that had been expected to be decisive

SUR in English

Friday, 17 May 2024, 09:38

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Six hours of talks were held in Brussels on Thursday this week between the UK and the EU on the future of the border between Gibraltar and Spain. It was the second high-level meeting on the subject in a month as both sides sought a deal that would keep the movement of people and goods into and out of the Rock smooth while neither compromising Gibraltar’s sovereignty, the fear of UK critics, nor going easy on a “tax haven”, the current fear of the Andalusian regional government in Spain.

The foreign ministers of Britain and Spain, Lord Cameron and José Manuel Albares, were present with their teams as was the vice-president of the European Commission in charge of the subject, Maros Sefcovic, and Chief Minister of Gibraltar Fabian Picardo.

“On 12 April [the last meeting] we made a lot of progress, we reached important agreements, the teams have worked intensively and have brought positions even closer together, and I hope that today we will do as much as possible and if possible definitively,” Spain’s Albares had declared expectantly on his arrival at the headquarters of the European Commission at lunchtime.

However, this time it was not to be either, although all sides agreed to stay in close touch, a joint statement released in the evening stated.

"Today’s discussions took place in a constructive atmosphere, with important breakthroughs and additional areas of agreement. All sides are reassured that the agreement is getting closer and will work closely and rapidly on outstanding areas towards an overall EU-UK agreement," said the joint statement.

"The meeting reaffirmed their shared commitment to concluding an EU-UK agreement to bring confidence, legal certainty and stability to the lives and livelihoods of the people of the whole region, by protecting and improving economy, trade, mobility, environment and social wellbeing, while safeguarding all parties’ legal positions," it concluded.

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