FILE PHOTO: Germany’s Economy and Energy Minister Peter Altmaier presents annual economic report and coal exit law in Berlin, Germany January 29, 2020. REUTERS/Annegret Hilse
BERLIN (Reuters) – Germany wants to do all it can to conclude negotiations with Britain on its future relationship with the European Union by the end of this year, Economy Minister Peter Altmaier said on Friday.
“Together with the chief negotiator, Michel Barnier, together with the Commission, we will do all we can to bring to a positive conclusion by the year’s end the further negotiations with the United Kingdom,” Altmaier told reporters.
“We agreed that this (Brexit) offers a big opportunity – despite the melancholy one feels – to strengthen and reform the European Union,” Altmaier added at a joint news conference with Thierry Breton, European Commissioner for internal markets.
The United Kingdom formally leaves the EU at 2300 GMT on Friday, a move supporters of Brexit see as the country regaining full control over its destiny and wh