William Bain on trade talks (or not)
MEPs have voted to urge the EU not to open the next phase of Brexit talks unless there is a "major breakthrough".
A motion in the European Parliament to back a delay in any decision over trade discussions was supported by 557 MEPs, with 92 against and 29 abstentions.
The result was something of a foregone conclusion after last week's fourth round of negotiations, when Michel Barnier made it clear there were still stumbling blocks.
Several MEPs claimed UK divisions were hampering the process, but UKIP's Nigel Farage accused the EU of "treating the UK like a hostage".
William Bain is a trade and Brexit expert at the British Retail Consortium and a former Labour MP.
He distilled the subtle botanicals of international trade in a post-Brexit world to a decidedly English-tasting gin. Now who’s exporting tonic water?