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Professor-Doctor Daniel Thym, an expert in EU law, said Brussels should avoid any “unnecessary delays” in its ratification process after several hiccups threatened to derail the completion of the paperwork. His warning comes after EU member states claimed translations of the 1,246-page Trade and Cooperation Agreement could miss the deadline for ratification. Britain has agreed to provisionally apply the future relationship treaty give until February 28 to give Brussels time to complete any outstanding formalities.
Speaking at a Bundestag hearing in Germany, Professor-Doctor Thym said: “I would warn against badmouthing the cooperation programme.
“The EU, just like Great Britain drove a hard bargain and they achieved a lot, but more wasn’t possible.
“And if ratification was now delayed unnecessarily, then the British side would get the impression that the EU does not take its responsibilities seriously.
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“That is not something we would want.”
Downing Street has so far rejected the idea of allowance the EU to extend the period of provisional application.
But Brussels has yet to put in a formal request ahead of the February 28 deadline.
If delayed, MEPs could be given until April to scrutinise and eventually vote to rubber-stamp the Brexit trade deal.
It is understood EU member states are also keen for the extra time so they can understand the so-called level playing field provisions in the treaty.
Express.co.uk previously reported that some European capitals were pushing for more powers in any decision to punish Britain for attempting to gain a competitive advantage over the bloc.
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Professor-Doctor Franz Mayer recommended that Germany’s federal government should “keep their foot in the door” of this process.
He said: “My advice for the Bundestag would be to definitely try to keep their foot in the door.
“As I have already said, this will only work if the federal government will also have possibilities to exert influence on the European level.
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“This depends on the voting mode at the council because the council decides on the common stances.
“Therefore the Bundestag would then have to try to get the federal government to take a stance at the starting point of the currently still fluid process of finalising the agreement.”
Additional reporting by Monika Pallenberg
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