BORIS Johnson hit the phone to Brussels last night amid a new Brexit deadlock.
The EU stance on unfair competition was declared virtually “offensive” while bids to break the fishing stalemate also failed.
The PM admitted the talks were in a “serious situation” and would collapse unless the EU moves substantially from “unreasonable demands”.
Brussels, which originally suggested a ten-year transition for the UK getting back full control of its fish stocks, have dropped that to eight years. But Brit negotiators suggest three years.
And the EU wants to exempt more than £680billion it spends subsidising industries on the Continent while demanding the right to punish Britain for similar state aid spending.
A source said: “What they’re asking us to sign is bordering on offensive.”
The PM believes these outrageous demands on state aid could mean No Deal by December 31.
If Britain signed up to the terms, the EU could effectively subsidise production of niche industries – such as electric cars in Europe — but if the UK offered a similar subsidy to businesses here, Brussels could impose trade blocks.
Mr Johnson called EC boss Ursula von der Leyen, with her saying: “Big differences remain to be bridged, in particular on fisheries — and bridging them will be very challenging.”
Downing Street said: “Even though the gap had narrowed some fundamental areas remain difficult.”
On fishing, No 10 added: “The EU is simply not reasonable and if there was to be an agreement it needed to shift significantly.”
Yet EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier tweeted “good progress” had been made with a possibility of a breakthrough tomorrow.
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