Both of the above answers are partial only. To see why, and find a more accurate answer, you need to look back at why there is a problem in the first place.
First off, the entire agreement is pretty much agreed upon, with the exception of the so-called "Irish backstop". So there isn't any reason why most of it would need further negotiating, or re-negotiating. Both sides can live with, and agreed, on the points they cover. If it wasn't for the backstop issue, brexit would surely have happened.
So we can reframe the question - is there any sign that a renegotiation could solve whatever the problem is related to the Irish Backstop, in such a way that both sides can live with it? To answer that, we need to ask: what's so important about this issue? Why is this one point on the backstop derailing it all? We aren't helped by the fact that discussion of it, tends to obscure the problem.
The basic problem in the brexit dialog is this:
- Brexit in an "ideal" sense would mean Britain becomes a sovereign state no longer bound by EU rules. In that case, it would surely want different rules (otherwise why leave).
- If two states have different rules, they need to have a way to manage their border. If you don't, then your entire economy is undermined. So every country and sovereign region demands and enforces the integrity of their borders, for trade and all other purposes. No country anywhere in the world has yet managed to do away with this, with a neighbouring country that has a quite different set of border laws, without some kind of physical border activity, nor by just using "technical measures".
- The EU surely needs to protect its border integrity with the UK after brexit. The UK needs to do likewise with the EU as well. Neither can afford to back down in this need. It's too fundamental.
- But there is no good place to put a border. It either breaks the Irish agreement (northern Ireland vs Eire), or breaks UK unity (northern Ireland vs mainland UK). And they can't back down on these either, they will have those effects if this happens, it would seem.
- The brexit problem is held in place because of the desire to end up with different border laws, but also having nowhere workable to put the border at which they'll be enforced. This would be true - and will still be an unsolvable problem - even with a no-deal brexit. The border would most likely go up between NI and Eire, by default, simply because that's the actual EU boundary, until the UK picks somewhere else. The EU wouldn't have any choice - sacrifice its own integrity or set up a border at the Eire/NI border. (Or if Eire won't, then it'll have to separate from the EU itself to the extent of an Eire/EU hard border)
So now we can return to the question. Is there any sign the EU can back down, or red lines can change enough to solve brexit?
A solution can only apparently come around, in one of a few ways:
- agreement to a customs union or other common rules, so that no hard border is needed. But this would eviscerate brexit and gut all that many brexiteers hope for.
- otherwise a border must exist. The choices are breaking the Good Friday Agreement or the UK. Those are other red lines that could be broken, though you'd have to be mad to choose the former. (No deal probably means that each country may have to put a controlled border where it feels the need, risking GFA or UK.being broken - not that a hard border doesn't exist)
- or remain.
There are signs that all 3 of these would be acceptable options to the EU. It would agree to an open/lighter border if the UK was willing to drop red lines and seek some kind of customs or regulatory alignment. It would agree to a hard border. It would agree to the UK changing its mind.
Its not clear that any other solutions are acceptable to the EU, and there haven't been signs anything else would be accepted, probably for the simple reason that no others seem to have been proposed that can resolve the problems.above.
The problem, to reiterate, is not whether there are signs that the EU could change its view. Its that, for its own integrity, it just cannot change the things above, that hold the problem in place.
The killing irony is that the UK knew, or should have known, this beforehand. You don't need a 6 figure salary and political career to answer questions like "what would the main implications of brexit, and main issues with an agreement, be". Classic case of handwaving a problem away, failing.