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Bolton: Trump administration enthusiastically backs no-deal Brexit

U.S. National Security Advisor, John Bolton, gestures as he meets with journalists during a visit to London
National Security Adviser John Bolton addresses journalists in London Monday. Photo: Peter Nicholls/Reuters

The Trump administration supports a no-deal Brexit and Britain is "first in line" for a trade deal with the U.S., National Security Adviser John Bolton told reporters after meeting with U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson, the BBC reports.

"To be clear, in the Trump administration, Britain's constantly at the front of the trade queue, or line as we say. We want to move very quickly. We wish we could have moved further along in this with the prior government."

The state of play: Brexit talks with the European Union have reached an impasse. Johnson wants to renegotiate the terms ahead of Britain's scheduled exit from the EU on Oct. 31. The EU refuses to meet Johnson's demands.

  • The U.K. would leave the EU without a formal transition period or legal agreement on issues including border policy and trade if no deal is reached.
  • Bolton told reporters if the British government opts for a no-deal Brexit, "we would support it enthusiastically," according to Reuters.

The big picture: Bolton said the U.K. and U.S. could sign a series of sector-by-sector free-trade deals ahead of a comprehensive trade agreement as a way of helping the British government cope with the consequences of a no-deal Brexit, according to the Guardian.

"The ultimate end result is a comprehensive trade agreement covering all trading goods and services. But to get to that you could do it sector by sector, and you can do it in a modular fashion. In other words, you can carve out some areas where it might be possible to reach a bilateral agreement very quickly, very straightforwardly."

Go deeper: Everything you need to know about Brexit