With Brexit negotiations between the European Union and United Kingdom set to be “very, very challenging,” the vice president of the European Commission on Monday urged all parties to put aside their negative attitudes.
The softer stance taken by Jyrki Katainen on Monday was in contrast with the hard line from the Commission’s President Jean-Claude Juncker, whose war of words with UK Prime Minister Theresa May cast uncertainties over the negotiations that are expected to start next month.
“We need a pragmatic attitude. Let’s put all negative attitudes aside because the negotiation will be — technically speaking, judicially speaking — very, very challenging. People have no idea how complicated this negotiation is. That’s why we need a pragmatic mind and good solution,” Katainen told CNBC’s “Squawk Box.”
He added that the EU wants a “good package” with the UK. Both sides should be able to reach a deal in two years, he said.
“It will take some time because traditionally thinking, economically thinking, it’s a very, very challenging task. Nevertheless, in the next two years we should have a divorce paper signed and a new arrangement placed between the EU and UK,” said Katainen.