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According to Reuters, the European Union is beginning to push hard for a Brexit agreement to be finalized by October of this year, or else the UK risks facing a messy exit process.

Key highlights

On Thursday the EU warned UK Prime Minister Theresa May that if she doesn’t begin giving up more ground on trade or the Irish border issue, she runs the risk of Britain experiencing a hard crash on its way out the EU door.

Meanwhile, PM May is promising Ireland that it will not see a ‘hard border’ with Britain, though PM May is also warning that she too is not afraid to see a hard exit from the EU, bringing the round-table discussions in Salzburg to a rough standstill as both sides throw around the concept of a hard-Brexit as more of a negotiating tactic than an outright threat.

“But leaders also tried to put a positive spin on their 24 hours of talks. Summit chair Donald Tusk said he was more optimistic about getting agreements both to ease Britain out gently and to sketch out a future free trade pact.  Tusk said a Brussels summit on Oct. 18 would be a “moment of truth” to overcome remaining big problems and leaders penciled in the weekend of Nov. 17-18 to formalize a final agreement.” – Reuters