Spain and the UK will maintain their “wonderful relationship” following Brexit says Rajoy
The President of the Government, Mariano Rajoy, stressed in London, where he met with the British Prime Minister, Theresa May, that the second phase of Brexit negotiations will start “as soon as possible”. He also thanked Theresa May for her position on Catalonia.
At the press conference that Mariano Rajoy and Theresa May offered the media at the start of their meeting, they agreed that Spain and the United Kingdom maintain close and fruitful relations and that these will continue following the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the European Union.
The President of the Government of Spain described bilateral relations as enjoying a “wonderful” period: the United Kingdom is the leading destination for Spanish investments and the fourth ranked trading partner while, in turn, the United Kingdom is the second ranked investor in Spain. “But the most important aspect is the relations between the people”, said Mariano Rajoy, who recalled that 18 million British tourists visit Spain each year, half a million British citizens live in our country and 250,000 Spaniards reside in the United Kingdom.
The President of the Government argued that both governments have been “very active” in defending the rights of citizens in the negotiations for the withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union. He also expressed his “absolute conviction” that the second phase of these negotiations will start “as soon as possible”. The goal, he maintained, is “to preserve the wonderful relations” that exist between Spain and the United Kingdom.
Respect for the rule of law
As regards the situation in Catalonia, Mariano Rajoy thanked Theresa May for the support she offered the people and Government of Spain over this matter. “Without respect for the rule of law and for the laws of a country, there is no democracy”, he stressed.
For her part, the British Prime Minister expressed her “support for the President of the Government on the issue of Catalonia” and expressed that “it is fundamental for the rule of law to prevail and for the Spanish Constitution to be respected”.
To end, the President of the Government pointed out that combating terrorism is a priority for both countries. “We have been hit very hard, but we will win this fight and to ensure this it is fundamental, as indeed we have been doing, for our intelligence services work together ever more closely”, he remarked.