We miss you already! Leading MEP admits Brussels is ‘very, very sad’ over Brexit

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David McAllister, a German politician who chairs the UK Co-ordination Group in the European Parliament also admitted Brexit has caused many problems across the bloc. It comes as the International Trade Secretary is having talks with New Zealand and Australian officials about securing multi-billion-pound trade deals in the next few months.

Giving evidence to Holyrood’s Europe and Culture Committee this morning, the MEP, added: “I’ve got to be diplomatic, I won’t say mess, but this whole Brexit has caused so many problems.

“It’s just so unfortunate because if you look at the world there are so many other things we could be dealing with.

“But, of course, we respect every decision taken in London, even though we are still very, very sad.”

Speaking to the Committee, he stressed the trade deal agreed on Christmas Eve was “unprecedented”, being the first the EU had negotiated with a former member state.

But he gloated: “What we will have to keep in mind is no free trade agreement can ever match EU membership nor participation in our single market.

“Brexit may be done but we will be living with the consequences of Brexit for many, many years and decades.”

Mr McAllister, a member of Germany’s CDU party led by Angela Merkel, continued: “I don’t like lecturing the UK, but obviously what we are reading is there were so many surprises since January, obviously not everyone was 100 percent prepared.”

Addressing UK politicians, he stressed: “If you leave the European Union, if you leave the single market, if you leave the customs union, this will have consequences, because as a matter of fact the UK and the EU are now totally separate legal systems and two totally separate markets.”

Mr McAllister also discussed how Germany was reacting to Brexit and how prepared businesses were for new trade rules.

He told the committee: “My impression is at least in my home country Germany businesses were informed at an early stage what they can expect and what they have to expect for trade.

“There was a big information campaign for all companies, specially targeting smaller and medium-sized companies operating in the UK market.

“It seems that perhaps not 100 percent of all businesses in the UK dealing with the single market on the continent were informed and prepared on the same level.”

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He described the Erasmus student exchange scheme which the EU said Scotland and Wales could not be apart of as a “total lose-lose situation.”

He added: “I really, really am disappointed, especially because the UK Government originally indicated they would be ready to continue the participation in this programme of academic co-operation.

“It is important to point out the UK can come back at any time should it wish to revise its decisions.”

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