Brexit: Brits least confident in Europe of UK negotiating strength

Fintan SmithPolitical Researcher
October 08, 2020, 10:08 AM UTC

Little optimism for a trade deal being agreed amongst both Brits and EU countries

Despite Boris Johnson securing a landslide victory for the Tories in 2019 with the promise to ‘get Brexit done’, Brits are now least likely of all our EuroTrack countries (Britain, France, Germany, Denmark and Sweden) to think that Britain has the upper hand in the Brexit negotiations.

British belief that the government has the advantage in the Brexit negotiations has been gradually falling over the last six months. In March 26% of Britons thought the UK was on top; that figure is now just 18%

Half (51%) of Brits now believe the EU to have the upper hand in the negotiations, up from 41%  in March.

The French are the only nation surveyed where a greater proportion believe Britain to have the upper hand in the ongoing negotiations, at 39% for the UK vs 30% backing the EU.

Those in Denmark are more assured of the EU dominating Britain in the negotiations, with just 23% favouring Britain compared to 50% who believe that the EU hold the trump cards.This comes as British and EU negotiators enter into the ninth round of Brexit negotiations in order to try and secure a trade deal before the transition period ends on 31  December.

However, after three years of Brexit negotiations, all countries surveyed are pessimistic about the outcome, with most no longer confident a trade deal will be agreed this year..

Brits are again the most pessimistic, with just 15% confident compared to 72% who are not confident. In Germany just 17% are confident a trade deal will happen, Denmark 15%, Sweden 20% and France 20%.

With the deadline looming, do people think the two sides still even want a deal in the first place? A majority in every country certainly feel this is the case when it comes to the EU.

But there is less of a consensus when it comes to whether the UK wants a deal. Those living in Germany are completely split on the issue, with 35% saying they think Britain does want a deal and 35% saying they don’t. Brits themselves are similarly split when it comes to their own government’s intentions (39% do want a deal, 34% do not), while people in France, Sweden and Denmark tend to think they do by wide margins.

See full results here and here