UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson said that “it is now time for both sides to step up the tempo” in regards to Brexit.
The prime minister said on Thursday that EU officials and the UK’s lead Brexit negotiator, David Frost, had agreed to meet twice a week to devise a new exit deal ahead of a crucial EU Council summit on October 17 and 18.
“I have said right from my first day in office that we are ready to work in an energetic and determined way to get a deal done.
“While I have been encouraged with my discussions with EU leaders over recent weeks that there is a willingness to talk about alternatives to the anti-democratic backstop, it is now time for both sides to step up the tempo,” Johnson said.
The EU said it expects the UK to come up with “concrete proposals”.
A European Commission spokesperson was quoted by the BBC as saying that its “doors remain open,” adding that it had ”demonstrated our willingness to work 24/7 throughout this long process”.
The UK is currently scheduled to exit the EU on 31 October with or without a deal.
According to the Financial Times, there are between 20 and 40 Tory MPs that may vote with the Labour opposition for Brexit to be delayed instead of leaving the EU without a deal.
Former Justice Secretary David Gauke resigned earlier this year because of Johnson’s willingness to go ahead with no-deal Brexit. He told BBC that next week could be MPs’ “only opportunity” to challenge a no deal outcome.