European Union trade commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom said on Thursday it would likely take a couple of years to negotiate a trade deal with the United Kingdom after it leaves the bloc.
She noted a deal with Canada had taken around seven years and was still pending approval with the EU parliament, but said others were quicker.
“It’s hard to say (how long). It takes a couple of years depending on what they want,” she said, speaking on a panel at the World Economic Forum. “We are negotiating 15-16 trade deals at the moment so we are busy.”
Asked if the UK would be at the end of the queue she said “Yes”.
“Trade agreements take time as they are so complex,” Malmstrom added.
Source: Reuters (Reporting by Sujata Rao; Editing by Dominic Evans)