Europe

'Say g'day to the quiet Britons': Scott Morrison congratulates Boris Johnson on win

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Australia's Prime Minister Scott Morrison has joined other world leaders in congratulating Boris Johnson on his re-election as Britain's leader.

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison says he is looking forward to the smooth formation of a post-Brexit free-trade between the two countries after Boris Johnson's re-election as British Prime Minister

Mr Morrison congratulated Mr Johnson on bringing "stability" to Britain and asked him to "say g'day to the quiet Britons for us".

The reference gives a nod to Mr Morrison's own electoral success in May, which he credits to the votes from "quiet Australians".

"Looking forward to the stability this brings and a new deal for Oz with the UK," he said in a message posted on Twitter. "Say g'day to the quiet Britons for us."

In his victory speech, Mr Johnson also singled out "an Australian-style points-based immigration system" as one of the key promises he would implement. 

He listed the policies that he would be prioritising.

"Record spending on schools, an Australian-style points-based immigration system, more police, colossal new investments in infrastructure, in science; using our incredible technological advantages to make this country, the cleanest, greenest on Earth with the most far-reaching environmental program," he told party supporters.

'Celebrate Boris!'

US President Donald Trump also congratulated Boris Johnson, saying the development will mean the UK and US will be free to strike a "massive" new trade deal after Brexit.

Boris Johnson's election victory puts Britain firmly on course to leave the EU in January, leaving the country open to negotiate free trade deals.

Mr Trump says the agreement has the potential to be "far bigger and more lucrative" than any deal that could have been made with the European Union.

"Congratulations to Boris Johnson on his great WIN! Britain and the United States will now be free to strike a massive new Trade Deal after BREXIT," Mr Trump wrote in a message posted on Twitter.

The prospect of a trade deal with the US was a major talking point during the election campaign, with Labour claiming the NHS was at risk of being sold off to US companies in the fallout from Brexit.

Israel's foreign minister said Mr Johnson's win is a "victory of values" over anti-Semitism.

"Looking forward to working together to strengthening even further the Israel/UK partnership," Israel Katz said in a post on Twitter.

Britain's opposition Labour party has been accused of allowing prejudice against Jews to exist within its ranks.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel pledged to develop a "friendship and close partnership" with Britain but Russia said it doubted Johnson's win would improve frayed ties.

EU says 'ready' for Brexit trade talks after Johnson win

EU leaders said they are ready for the next phase of Brexit, just hours after the resounding victory of Prime Minister Boris Johnson's party that all but seals Britain's divorce from the bloc.

"My point is very clear: we are ready. We have decided what are our priorities," said EU President Charles Michel as he arrived to an EU summit where leaders will discuss the aftermath of the UK vote and Britain's planned departure from the bloc on January 31.

"I hope we will have loyal negotiations, good negotiations," added Mr Michel, who coordinates EU summits for the bloc's 28 member states, that for now also includes Britain.

The former Belgian prime minister hoped for "an early ratification by the British parliament" of the exit agreement negotiated between London and the EU, "so that we can start the negotiations on the next phase calmly, quietly but with great determination".

The EU leaders have a Brexit text ready to adopt at the end of their two day summit, which was dominated on Thursday by climate talks.

According to the latest draft, seen by AFP, the 27 other EU leaders will call for "as close as possible a future relationship with the UK" while warning that "the future relationship will have to be based on a balance of rights and obligations and ensure a level playing field" in terms of business and trade rules.

And they will ask the European Commission to submit "a draft comprehensive mandate for a future relationship with the UK immediately after its withdrawal."

EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier will direct trade negotiations, which the leaders will follow closely "and provide further guidance as necessary, fully consistent with the EU's best interest," the conclusions will add.

EU trade pacts with countries such as South Korea, Japan and Canada have taken between five and nine years to complete, while EU officials warn that Johnson’s plan to diverge from the EU, rather than mirror EU rules, could make negotiations even more complicated.

Others in the EU bloc greeted the news of Mr Johnson's election win with reluctance.

The Czech prime minister warned Mr Johnson's election victory was 'bad news for Europe'.

"It is obviously a giant success for Boris Johnson. He is a charismatic leader," Prime Minister Andrej Babis said.

"He won and now they will leave, unfortunately. That is bad news for Europe," he said as he arrived for a second day of an EU summit in Brussels.

With AAP, AFP.

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