The UK will have to ‘live with the consequences’ of Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s decision not to maintain close ties with the European Union (EU) after Brexit. She said that in an interview with various European media on Saturday.
Merkel expressed doubts about the British’s will to reach an agreement with the EU on an orderly Brexit. “It would of course be in the interest of the British and all European member states if an orderly departure is reached,” Merkel said. “But that can only happen if that’s what both parties want.”
If the Johnson government wants to define its relationship with the European Union itself, Merkel said the result would be a less closely connected economy. The Chancellor believes that EU Member States should abandon the idea that it is up to them to decide what the British should want. “It’s up to Britain to determine that, and we, the EU27, will respond appropriately,” she added.
Britain formally left the EU on January 31, and it should reach an agreement with the EU on the new interrelationships within six months.