European Union External Action

Ambassador Vale de Almeida: We need to build on common ground to avoid a permanent Brexit

17/02/2021 - 16:16
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The EU Ambassador to the UK João Vale de Almeida participated in an online seminar on “The EU-UK Track 2 process”, organised by the European Policy Centre. He encouraged a dynamic but competitive relationship between the EU and the UK centered on cooperation and shared interests.

In his conversation with EPC Chief Executive Fabian Zuleeg, Ambassador Vale de Almeida said:


“We need to make a choice on our future relations with the UK. We must avoid a permanent Brexit, a situation in which we focus on the past as opposed to the future. We need to move on from old disputes and embrace a new mindset. Our focus should be on building a dynamic, positive and forward-looking relationship with the UK. There is life after Brexit - it will be different to life before Brexit, but I still think there is a lot of good we can do together”.


The event was attended by policy-makers, analysts and European and British diplomats who actively participated in the discussion. 


Ambassador Vale de Almeida emphasised that both sides need to face the consequences of Brexit in multiple areas: 


“Some of the recent disruptions are the inevitable result of the UK being a third country. For instance, the end of visa-free travel for creative workers derives from a decision taken by the UK during the negotiations. We will not be blamed for the consequences of choices taken by the British side”. 


“We are not here to score points, but to find solutions to problems within the framework of the Trade and Cooperation Agreement. If we concentrate on what unites us, we will make the most of our relationship and avoid a permanent Brexit”.

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