Rifts over fishing narrow in EU-UK talks

Divides between the EU and Britain over access to fish stocks have narrowed.

That's according to Brussels insiders Tuesday (December 22).

Brexit is due to complete on December 31st, when Britain will leave the EU's single market and customs union.

With that, its current free trade arrangements expire.

Both sides have struggled for months to seal a new agreement on everything from trade to transport to energy.

But fish stocks have been a big reason as to why the talks have dragged on.

Sources said the EU is willing to go as far as cutting the bloc's catch in British waters by around 25% next year.

They also described that issue as just one part of a much bigger puzzle, with other equally important factors.

They include the length of the transition period beyond December 31, and how the EU could retaliate if the UK cut its vessels out of British waters.

The sources said a deal could come together this week, next week, or not at all.

The final stages of the talks also come as the EU and other countries have suspended most travel to and from Britain.

They are trying to stop a new strain of the virus spreading from the UK.

The European Commission recommended on Tuesday, though, that travel bans imposed by EU countries should end to allow freight and essential travel to resume and let people return home.