United Kingdom publishes bill to replace European Union laws

Tusk, who will share a proposal of the negotiating guidelines with the other 27 member states on Friday, said there was one positive from Brexit - that it had made the remaining European Union members more determined and united than before ahead of "difficult negotiations".

The paper, which sets the scene for two years of tough Brexit talks, has now been sent to European capitals before a full negotiating mandate is cemented at a summit on April 29.

Spanish minister Inigo Mendez de Vigo says "this is an important point in the future negotiations of the United Kingdom's exit from the European Union".

This includes dealing with Britain's existing commitments to the European Union; providing clarity and legal certainty to European Union citizens, businesses and other stakeholders; and "creative and flexible" solutions to avoiding a hard border between Northern Ireland and Ireland.

It comes after German Chancellor Angela Merkel refused to allow the two agreements being bashed out at the same time.

"Only once we have achieved sufficient progress on the withdrawal, can we discuss the framework for our future relationship", Tusk tweeted.

Gina Miller, the investment manager who took on the government and won over whether May needed parliament's approval to begin Brexit talks, said she was concerned that laws affecting citizens' rights could be changed.

After more than forty years of being united, we owe it to each other to do everything we can to make this divorce as smooth as possible.

The Government should work towards an exit deal that helps the industry encourage more British people to undertake construction careers, whilst also adopting a flexible visa regime for construction workers once Britain has left the EU.

In her six page letter to EU President Donald Tusk triggering the start of Brexit talks on Wednesday, May appeared to warn the EU against playing hardball over talks by pairing economic talks with those on security matters.

"These are draft guidelines and we look forward to beginning negotiations once they have formally been agreed by the 27 member states".

The EU draft says the future of Gibraltar will be set in talks between Spain and the United Kingdom, giving Spain a very strong negotiating position.

"Only when this question is dealt with, can we, hopefully soon after, begin talking about our future relationship", she said in Berlin. The EU has asked for a payment worth £50 billion ($62.36 billion) but Prime Minister Theresa May and Brexit minister David Davis are keen to hand over a significantly reduced sum.

But that leaves only 10 months before October 2018 when Barnier says the talks must wrap up to give time for the European Parliament and member states to approve what the negotiators come up with.

A day after triggering its European Union exit process, the British government began outlining Thursday how it intends to convert thousands of European Union rules into British law when it leaves the bloc in 2019.

  • Arturo Norris