MOSCOW, February 9. /TASS/. The UK’s secession from the European Union has bonded the remaining countries together, Russian Ambassador to the EU Vladimir Chizhov said on Rossiya 24 TV live on Friday.
"Brexit brought 27 other countries [the EU member states - TASS] together. If anyone in the UK expected that some other remaining countries would make steps in the same direction after them and that it would facilitate London’s talks with the EU, then they miscalculated. A reverse effect occurred: the negotiation process [between the UK and EU] is still proceeding under the ‘27 against one’ formula," he noted.
According to Chizhov, Brexit will become a challenge for Russian diplomats as well, because the UK will cease to be a party to agreements signed between Russia and the European Union. Among them are, in particular, agreements within the WTO. The UK’s withdrawal from all these agreements will lead, in particular, to recounting of agricultural and industrial quotas.
"To date, neither the UK, nor the European Union is thinking about it, but they’ll have to," the diplomat noted.
Official negotiations between London and Brussels on the terms under which the UK will withdraw from the EU started on June 19, 2017, in the Belgian capital, almost a year after opposition to European integration had won the UK referendum on this issue with a 51.9% of votes. Brexit is to be launched on March 29, 2019, after which a transition period will begin and will last until December 31, 2020.