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BRUSSELS, Nov. 15, 2018 (Xinhua) -- European Union's chief negotiator Michel Barnier speaks at a press conference at the European Council in Brussels, Belgium, Nov. 15, 2018. A European Council meeting is expected on Nov. 25 in order to "finalize and formalize the Brexit agreement," European Council President Donald Tusk told reporters Thursday. (Xinhua/Zheng Huansong/IANS) by .
European Union’s chief negotiator Michel Barnier

The UK government is hopeful on reaching a post-Brexit trade deal with the EU next month, according to Downing Street.

According to BBC report, the spokesman of Prime Minister Boris Johnson said UK negotiators would “continue to plug the gaps” when talks enter their seventh round in Brussels on Wednesday.

The two sides remain divided over competition rules, fishing rights and how a deal would be enforced.

The UK has ruled out extending the December deadline to reach an agreement.

EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier had dinner with UK counterpart David Frost on Tuesday evening, with talks set to conclude on Friday, the BBC reported.

Earlier, both the parties confirmed a new timetable of meetings aimed at reaching a post-Brexit deal on a future relationship before the end of 2020.

A series of meetings between negotiating teams from both sides will meet in London and Brussels during August and September, with a final round taking place in Brussels in the week ending October 2, according to reports.

LONDON, May 2, 2018 (Xinhua) -- British Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs Boris Johnson heads to 10 Downing Street for a Brexit cabinet meeting in London, Britain, on May 2, 2018. British Prime Minister Theresa May held a Brexit meeting with select cabinet ministers here on Wednesday. (Xinhua/Tim Ireland/IANS) by .

Michel Barnier earlier said at the conclusion of the last round of talks that an agreement would be needed by October at the latest. This was so it could be ratified by the EU and its 27 member states before the current post-Brexit transition period ends on December 31.

Details of the program of meetings was published by Downing Street, with the British government saying the program takes into account the current state of the negotiations after six rounds.

The latest round of talks ended on July 23 when both sides said there is still some way to go to reach a future trading relationship.

The future of fishing in waters off the British Isles as well as the so-called level playing field were the crunch stumbling blocks to reaching a deal in time for December 31 when the Brexit transition period ends following Britain’s departure from the EU on January 31.

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