'Good for Britain' If I was Prime Minister: EU's Juncker

   •    23 Februari 2018 20:03 WIB
europe (en)
'Good for Britain' If I was Prime Minister: EU's Juncker
EU Commission President Jean Claude Juncker arrives for an informal meeting of the 27 EU heads of state or government at the European Council headquarters in Brussels on February 23, 2018. (Photo:AFP/Aris Oikonomou)

Brussels: European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker took a dig at London over Brexit talks on Friday, saying it would be "good for Britain" if he was prime minister.

Juncker made the comment at an EU summit when asked about a high-level British cabinet meeting chaired by premier Theresa May aimed at thrashing out a plan for a future partnership with the EU.

"I am not the British prime minister, it would be good for Britain if I was it, but I am not," Juncker told a reporter who quizzed him on when he expected to get details of the outcome.

"I am commenting on the outcome of the Chequers meeting when I know what is the exact conclusion," Juncker added as he arrived at the summit of 27 EU leaders, to which Britain was not invited.

May took senior ministers to the premier's country retreat of Chequers on Thursday to discuss what economic ties they want Britain to have with the European Union after leaving the bloc in March 2019.

The British PM is expected to give a speech outlining Britain's plans next week.

The EU has repeatedly called on Britain to clarify as soon as possible what it wants in terms of future ties, so that negotiations can move ahead.

Juncker meanwhile said he still assumed Britain would leave as planned in 2019, despite speculation about a repeat of the 2016 Brexit referendum.

"As far as the British parliament and government are concerned, it's for them to make any response to new questions which have arisen in the UK," Juncker said.

"My working hypothesis is that Britain will leave at the end of March 2019." (AFP)