FRANCE has fired a warning to Angela Merkel that a bad Brexit deal will hammer Germany’s economy as tensions build between Paris and Berlin.
Europe Minister Clément Beaune warned other leaders not to weaken as the final deadline loomed.
His remarks are a sign Emmanuel Macron fears he is losing his internal EU battle to hold out for the hardest possible terms.
Germany wants to stay patient and find a compromise but France is ready to walk away and trigger No Deal.
Mr Beaune said of Chancellor Merkel: “She knows the European market well enough to guess how the German economy would suffer from a bad deal.”
He added: “We won’t give in to time pressure. We will not accept an agreement at all costs on the pretext that we’re getting closer to the deadline.
But he admitted Mr Macron has given up hopes of retaining full status quo access to UK fishing waters, conceding: “We know that it is over.”
Germany is being backed up heavily by Ireland, which also wants to see compromises made to clinch a last-minute deal.
Foreign minister Simon Coveney said the agreement is now “98 per cent done” heading into the last few days of talks.
He said: “We are more likely to get a deal than not.”
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