The EU 27 have been told to be ready for April 6th
Leaders have been told to pencil in the first week of April, sources claimed although the final date is said to be dependent on Theresa May.
A summit of the other 27 national leaders to respond to May’s formal notification of the United Kingdom’s departure appears in an internal EU calendar and the 6 April, as is currently “to be confirmed”.
An EU source said European Council President Donald Tusk had asked last month that EU leaders keep that and the following day free for a summit which will set out guidelines for EU negotiators, based on what deal May asks for.
Donald Tusk said this morning that EU leaders would not hesitate once Article 50 was triggered and that terms would be set out within 48 hours.
Speaking ahead of a European summit in Brussels today and tomorrow, Donald Tusk, said: “When the UK notifies, it is our goal to react with the draft negotiation guidelines for the 27 member states to consider.
“For this I think we need more or less 48 hours.”
Theresa May is expected to trigger Article 50, setting off two years of Brexit negotiations, on around March 15.
His hasty timeline is likely to set alarm bells ringing in Westminster where MPs are highly aware of the fragility of negotiations and the fact some EU bosses may want to punish Britain for leaving the bloc.
The House of Lords has caused further headaches for Prime Minister Theresa May this week by voting to amend the Article 50 Bill for a second time.
Fears have also been raised over the EU fighting a hard negotiation as it will lose up to a fifth of its budget when Britain leaves, a new report has revealed.