THE UK Government is confident “there is a good chance” a Brexit deal can be struck as EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier is to stay on in London this week to continue trade talks.

The talks had been expected to switch to Brussels but it is reported that Mr Barnier is to remain in the UK until Wednesday – in part because of the high coronavirus infection rates in the Belgian capital.

Northern Ireland Secretary Brandon Lewis told The Andrew Marr Show that it is a positive development but warned the EU will still need to give up ground if an agreement between the two parties is to be reached.

He said: “The fact that Michel Barnier has outlined in the last week or so that they are going to come back and do these intensive negotiations, he recognises the EU do need to move, and that he is staying through to next week, is hopefully a very good sign.

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“We have got to make sure that it is a deal that works not just for our partners in Europe – we want to have a very good relationship with them obviously – but one that works for the United Kingdom.

“I think there is a good chance that we can get a deal but the EU need to understand that it is for them to move as well.”