The United Kingdom Prime Minister Theresa May is set to meet key EU figures for talks on Brexit which could determine whether the UK is able to move on to negotiations on trade.
Moreover, the deals were reached this weekend on the UK “divorce bill” and citizens’ rights. But the UK border with Ireland remains an outstanding issue.
The PM will meet European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker in Brussels, with Downing Street saying “plenty of discussions” lie ahead.
Katya Adler said there was an “upbeat mood” of “cautious optimism”.
The timings of Mrs May’s visit mark a deadline set by Donald Tusk, the president of the European Council, for her to come forward with an improved offer on the terms of the UK’s withdrawal from the EU.
The UK is hoping to start talks about a free trade agreement but the EU says it will only recommend this can take place when it deems “sufficient progress” has been made on the other issues.
The UK voted for Brexit last year and is due to leave in March 2019, but negotiations between the EU and the UK have not yet reached a breakthrough.