Brexit negotiations said to be at an impasse
Brexit negotiations in Brussels were reportedly at an impasse on Wednesday.
Bloomberg cited two officials as saying that a deal appears impossible at the moment unless the UK government moves its position.
One of the diplomats was quoted as saying that remaining issues can’t be resolved at a technical level and a new mandate from London is needed.
The EU understands that the British government is trying to get Northern Ireland’s unionist Democratic Unionist party on board, the person said.
EU and UK officials were set to resume Brexit talks later in the day ahead of a summit of EU leaders on Thursday.
Negotiating teams from the two sides were understood to have agreed in principle to create a customs border down the Irish Sea. After a 90-minute meeting with UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson, The DUP said in a statement: "We respect the fact negotiations are ongoing therefore cannot give a detailed commentary but it would be fair to indicate gaps remain and further work is required."
The UK is due to leave the EU on 31 October and Johnson has repeatedly insisted that this will be the case regardless of whether a deal is struck.
At 1045 BST, sterling was trading down 0.6% against the dollar at 1.2715, having a five-month high of 1.28 on Tuesday.
CMC Markets analyst David Madden said the report had "dashed hopes for the possibility of an agreement being reached soon".
"Much of the major gains that were made yesterday were driven by the prospect of a deal being achieved, so now some dealers are reversing their positions."