Portugal believes Brexit trade deal still possible, says minister

Meeting of EU Foreign Ministers at the European Council building in Brussels
FILE PHOTO: Portuguese Minister for Foreign Affairs Augusto Santos Silva attends a meeting of EU foreign ministers at the European Council building in Brussels, Belgium July 13, 2020. Stephanie Lecocq/Pool via REUTERS

December 18, 2020

LISBON (Reuters) – Portugal’s foreign minister said on Friday he believed a trade deal between Britain and the European Union was still possible and said a close relationship between both sides was essential for the future.

“I think it (a deal) is possible,” Augusto Santos Silva said during an online event to discuss priorities of Portugal’s European Council presidency, which kicks off in January.

“If not, we have to trade according to World Trade Organisation rules but we cannot renounce a close relationship between Britain and EU,” he added.

(Reporting by Catarina Demony and Sergio Goncalves; Editing by Andrei Khalip and Alison Williams)