Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy says he thinks a deal can quickly be worked out with Britain to defend the rights of British expats in Spain after Brexit.

He said the negotiations would start after an EU summit that will convene once Britain formally begins its EU divorce proceedings, expected for the end of March.

Rajoy also reiterated that he would use Brexit to renegotiate with London the status of Gibraltar.

Madrid has recently offered dual citizenship to Gibraltarians in exchange for joint sovereignty of the territory, which offers strategic control of access to the Mediterranean.