OTTAWA - Britain's envoy to Canada says her government wants to avoid a no-deal Brexit departure from the European Union, and its presentation of documents to Brussels on Thursday was a step towards a last-ditch agreement.

High Commissioner Susan le Jeune d'Allegeershecque said in an interview that a negotiated departure, not the so-called hard Brexit that would mean no negotiated departure agreement with the EU, is still the preferred option for her country.

Her assessment comes in face of widespread European criticism that British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has nothing new to offer the EU after more than two years of fruitless negotiations.

Le Jeune d'Allegeershecque was speaking in Ottawa hours after her government presented "confidential, technical non-papers" to the EU on Thursday, which have been described as discussion points and not formal proposals.

The EU confirmed receipt of the papers, which come after the 28-country bloc (counting Britain, for now) has criticized Johnson for not tabling concrete proposals ahead of an Oct. 31 deadline.

Johnson has said Britain will leave the EU by that date, with or without a deal.