EU summit chair: we want trade deal with Britain but must protect our market

FILE PHOTO: European Council President Charles Michel in Brussels, Belgium October 2, 2020. John Thys/Pool via REUTERS

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - EU summit chairman on Thursday said the bloc wanted a new trade deal with Britain but also needed to protect its cherished single market from cheap substandard goods.

“We want an agreement but we want also to protect the level playing field. It is a question of fairness, it is a question of jobs and of the integrity of the single market,” Charles Michel told reporters.

“We are ready to continue to negotiate with the UK, these are difficult negotiations,” he said, reiterating that the bloc wanted a deal but not “at any price”.

Reporting by Marine Strauss and Jan Strupczewski, Writing Gabriela Baczynska