NEGOTIATORS will today hunker down in Brussels in a desperate search of a Brexit breakthrough.
Intensive and secretive, the talks are a final bid to seal a new partnership agreement for when Britain's transition out of the European Union runs its course at the end of this year.
Among the key sticking points are fishing and industrial subsidies.
Despite an optimistic tone from both sides, if the talks fail an estimated £700 billion of annual bilateral trade in goods and services would be damaged from January 1 by tariffs and quotas.
The talks come as Nigel Farage prepared to rebrand the Brexit Party as an anti-lockdown party named Reform UK that will field a number of candidates at May's elections and claiming although it would "keep a close eye on Brexit", the Covid response was now the biggest threat facing the UK.
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