|Condition||Ratification by the Council of the European Union, the European Parliament, and the Parliament of the United Kingdom.|
|Part of a series of articles on the|
| British membership |
During 2017–2018, representatives of the United Kingdom and the European Union negotiated terms for Brexit, the planned withdrawal of the UK from the EU. These negotiations arose following the decision of the Parliament of the United Kingdom to invoke Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union, following the UK's EU membership referendum on 23 June 2016.
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain, is a sovereign country located off the north-western coast of the European mainland. The United Kingdom includes the island of Great Britain, the north-eastern part of the island of Ireland, and many smaller islands. Northern Ireland is the only part of the United Kingdom that shares a land border with another sovereign state, the Republic of Ireland. Apart from this land border, the United Kingdom is surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, with the North Sea to the east, the English Channel to the south and the Celtic Sea to the south-west, giving it the 12th-longest coastline in the world. The Irish Sea lies between Great Britain and Ireland. The United Kingdom's 242,500 square kilometres (93,600 sq mi) were home to an estimated 66.0 million inhabitants in 2017.
The European Union (EU) is a political and economic union of 28 member states that are located primarily in Europe. It has an area of 4,475,757 km2 (1,728,099 sq mi) and an estimated population of about 513 million. The EU has developed an internal single market through a standardised system of laws that apply in all member states in those matters, and only those matters, where members have agreed to act as one. EU policies aim to ensure the free movement of people, goods, services and capital within the internal market, enact legislation in justice and home affairs and maintain common policies on trade, agriculture, fisheries and regional development. For travel within the Schengen Area, passport controls have been abolished. A monetary union was established in 1999 and came into full force in 2002 and is composed of 19 EU member states which use the euro currency.
Brexit is the withdrawal of the United Kingdom (UK) from the European Union (EU). Following a referendum held on 23 June 2016 in which 51.9 percent of those voting supported leaving the EU, the Government invoked Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union, starting a two-year process which was due to conclude with the UK's exit on 29 March 2019—a deadline that has been extended to 31 October 2019.
The negotiating period began on 29 March 2017, when the United Kingdom served the withdrawal notice under Article 50. Withdrawal was to occur on 29 March 2019, two years after the date of notification, as required by Article 50.
On 29 March 2017, the United Kingdom (UK) invoked Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union (TEU) which began the member state's withdrawal, commonly known as Brexit, from the European Union (EU). In compliance with the TEU, the UK gave formal notice to the European Council of its intention to withdraw from the EU to allow withdrawal negotiations to begin.
Negotiations formally opened on 19 June 2017, when David Davis, the UK's Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, arrived in Brussels to meet with Michel Barnier, the Chief Negotiator appointed by the European Commission.They began to discuss a withdrawal agreement, including terms of a transitional period and an outline of the objectives for a future UK-EU relationship. In November 2018, European Union officials announced that they would accept no further negotiations or changes before the UK legally leaves.
David Michael Davis is a British Conservative Party politician who served as Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union from July 2016 to July 2018 and Chief Negotiator for Exiting the European Union from July 2016 to September 2017, and has served as Member of Parliament (MP) for Haltemprice and Howden since 1997. He was previously elected to the House of Commons for Boothferry in 1987, and reelected in 1992. Davis was sworn of the Privy Council in the 1997 New Year Honours, having previously been Minister of State for Europe from 1994 to 1997.
Her Majesty's Principal Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union or, informally, Brexit Secretary, is the Secretary of State responsible for the United Kingdom's withdrawal from the European Union, informally referred to as "Brexit". The secretary is overseeing withdrawal negotiations following a nationwide referendum on 23 June 2016, in which a majority voted in favour of exiting the EU. The office-holder is a member of the Cabinet.
Michel Bernard Barnier is a French politician and EU official serving as European Chief Negotiator for the United Kingdom Exiting the European Union since December 2016.
If the withdrawal agreement is ratified by the UK and other EU state governments and comes into force, negotiations to establish Free Trade Agreement treaties between the EU and the UK will be needed. In addition, the EU's existing Free Trade and WTO tariff-rate quotas with third countries (agreed while the UK was still a member) may need be split or renegotiated.
A tariff-rate quota (TRQ) is a two-tiered tariff regime which combines two conventional policy instruments in order to regulate imports. In its essence, a TRQ regime allows a lower tariff rate to be imposed on imports of a given product within a specified quantity, and requires a higher tariff rate to be imposed on imports exceeding that quantity. For example, a country may allow the importation of 5000 tractors at a tariff rate of 10%, and any tractor imported above this quantity will be subject to a tariff rate of 30%.
In March and April 2019, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom Theresa May and European Union leaders agreed to move the date of the UK's departure to 31 October 2019.
The Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, until 1801 known as the Prime Minister of Great Britain, is the head of government of the United Kingdom. The Prime Minister directs both the executive and the legislature, and together with their Cabinet are collectively accountable for their policies and actions to the Monarch, to Parliament, to their political party and ultimately to the electorate. The office of Prime Minister is one of the Great Offices of State. The current holder of the office, Theresa May, leader of the Conservative Party, was appointed by the Queen on 13 July 2016. May resigned as Conservative Party leader on 7 June 2019, remaining as Prime Minister until a new Prime Minister is appointed.
Theresa Mary May is a British politician serving as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom since 2016. She was Home Secretary from 2010 to 2016 and Leader of the Conservative Party from 2016 until 2019. May was first elected to be the Member of Parliament (MP) for Maidenhead in 1997. Ideologically, she identifies herself as a one-nation conservative.
May resigned as leader of the ruling Conservative Party on 7 June 2019; she remains prime minister until a successor is appointed.
The Conservative Party, officially the Conservative and Unionist Party, sometimes informally called the Tories, is a centre-right political party in the United Kingdom. The governing party since 2010, it is the largest in the House of Commons, with 312 Members of Parliament, and also has 249 members of the House of Lords, 4 members of the European Parliament, 31 Members of the Scottish Parliament, 11 members of the Welsh Assembly, eight members of the London Assembly and 8,916 local councillors.
|articles on the British exit from the European Union|
In the Conservative Party's manifesto for the United Kingdom general election in May 2015, an EU referendum was promised by the end of 2017.
The referendum, held on 23 June 2016, resulted in a 51.9% majority vote for Leaving the European Union.
According to the European parliament, "For the moment, it appears that the two sides have different views on the sequencing and scope of the negotiations, and notably the cross-over between the withdrawal agreement and the structure of future relations, and this divergence itself may be one of the first major challenges to overcome."
The Department for Exiting the European Union is responsible for overseeing the negotiations to leave the EU and for establishing the future relationship between the UK and EU.
The United Kingdom's proposed principles were set out in the Article 50 notification:
The Prime Minister's formal letter of notification was delivered in Brussels on 29 March 2017.It included withdrawal from the European Atomic Energy Community. The letter recognised that consequences for the UK of leaving the EU included loss of influence over the rules that affect the European economy, and UK companies trading within the EU aligning with rules agreed by institutions of which the UK would no longer be part. It proposed agreeing to seven principles for the conduct of the withdrawal negotiation. These are for:
The constitutional lawyer and retired German Supreme Court judge Udo Di Fabio has stated his opinion that separate negotiations with the EU institutions by Scotland or Northern Ireland would constitute a violation of the Lisbon Treaty, according to which the integrity of a member country is explicitly put under protection.
The start of negotiations was delayed until after the United Kingdom general election, which took place on 8 June 2017.Antonio Tajani, speaking on 20 April said that the early election should bring stability to the UK, which would have been good for negotiations. In the event, the election led to a hung parliament which has reduced the Prime Minister's room for manoeuvre; in particular in respect of the Irish border question due to her dependency on a confidence and supply agreement with Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party.
Following the United Kingdom's notification under Article 50, draft guidelines for the negotiations were sent to EU delegations of the 27 other member states (the EU27). The draft, prepared by the President of the European Council, states that the guidelines define the framework for negotiations under Article 50 and set out the overall positions and principles that the Union will pursue throughout the negotiation. It states that in the negotiations the Union's overall objective will be to preserve its interests, those of its member states, its citizens and its businesses, and that, in the best interest of both sides, the Union will be constructive throughout and strive to find an agreement. The draft sets out two core principles:
According to the European Parliament, the withdrawal agreement and any possible transitional arrangement(s) should enter into force "well before the elections to the European Parliament of May 2019", and the negotiations should focus on:
On 18 April 2017, a spokesman for Donald Tusk said "We expect to have the Brexit guidelines adopted by the European Council on 29 April and, following that, the Brexit negotiating directives ready on 22 May".On 29 April, the EU27 unanimously endorsed the draft guidelines with no debate.
In a speech to a plenary session of the European Committee of the Regions in Brussels on 22 March 2017, Barnier, as EU Chief Negotiator for the Preparation and Conduct of the Negotiations, said that the EU wanted to succeed by reaching a deal with the British, not against them.
On 22 May the European Council, following the approval of the negotiating directives that the EU27 had adopted by strong qualified majority voting,authorised the Commission to open Article 50 discussions with UK, with Michel Barnier appointed as the negotiator. It further confirmed that all agendas, EU position papers, Non-papers and EU text proposals would be released to the public and published on line.
Intergovernmental organisations also involved in Brexit uncertainty considerations include the World Trade Organization (WTO) and the International Air Transport Association (IATA). IATA expects an agreement to avoid disruption.
EU27 guidelines include:
The second phase, covering the post-Brexit relationship between the EU27 and the UK, was to begin "as soon as the European Council decides that sufficient progress has been made in the first phase towards reaching a satisfactory agreement on the arrangements for an orderly withdrawal".The earliest opportunity for this decision was 19 October 2017, at a summit of EU leaders. although at that meeting it was agreed to start negotiations during the December meeting.
"The United Kingdom's exit from and new partnership with the European Union" (PDF). UK Government. February 2017. p. 9.
Some effects of the UK withdrawal could emerge before the UK and the EU27 conclude the Article 50 negotiation, as a result of policies existing when the negotiation begins, or some change of policy later. At the outset policy provisions binding on the EU include principles, aspirations and objectives set out in the TEU (Treaty on European Union) Preambleand Articles, of which
Policies mentioned in the Preamble include:
UK policy was stated in a white paper published in February 2017: The United Kingdom's exit from and new partnership with the European Union.In the white paper, UK negotiating policy was set out as twelve guiding principles:
On 28 June 2016, five days after the referendum, Chancellor of Germany Angela Merkel announced to the German parliament the forthcoming EU negotiation position: the UK could only remain in the European Single Market (ESM) if the UK accepted EU migrants. There would be no cherry picking of the ESM's four conditions (free movement of goods, capital, services and labour). While she expected the UK to remain an important NATO partner, the EU's priority was unity and self-preservation. She warned the UK not to delude itself.The next day, Tusk confirmed that the UK would not be allowed access to the ESM unless they accepted its four freedoms of movement for goods, capital, services, and people.
In contrast, at her October 2016 party conference, Prime Minister Theresa May emphasised that ending the jurisdiction of EU law and free movement from Europe were priorities. She wished "to give British companies the maximum freedom to trade with and operate in the Single Market – and let European businesses do the same here", but not at the expense of losing sovereignty.
In November 2016, May proposed that Britain and the other EU countries mutually guarantee the residency rights of the 3.3 million EU immigrants in Britain and those of the 1.2 million British citizens living on the Continent, in order to exclude their fates being bargained during Brexit negotiations.Despite initial approval from a majority of EU states, May's proposal was blocked by European Council President Tusk and German Chancellor Merkel.
In January 2017, the Prime Minister presented 12 negotiating objectives and confirmed that the UK government would not seek permanent single market membership.The European Parliament's lead negotiator Guy Verhofstadt responded that there could be no "cherry picking" by the UK in the talks.
The statutory period for negotiation began on 29 March 2017, when the letter notifying withdrawal, signed by the British Prime Minister, was handed to the President of the European Council. The letter called for a "deep and special relationship" between the UK and the EU, and warned that failure to reach an agreement would result in EU-UK trade under World Trade Organisation terms, and a weakening of the UK's cooperation in the fight against crime and terrorism. The letter suggested prioritising an early deal on the rights of EU citizens in the UK and vice versa. In the letter, the Prime Minister reasoned that, as the EU leaders did not wish "cherry picking" of the ESM, the UK would not seek to remain within the ESM. Instead, the UK would seek a free trade agreement with the EU.In response, Merkel insisted that the EU would not discuss future cooperation without first settling the terms of the divorce, Verhofstadt referred to the letter as "blackmail" with regard to the point on security and terrorism, and EU Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker warned that the UK's decision to quit the block was a "choice they will regret one day".
A meeting at 10 Downing Street took place on 6 April 2017 between Theresa May and Donald Tusk to discuss "the way ahead on Brexit".Another meeting took place in London on 20 April 2017, this time between Theresa May and Antonio Tajani to discuss the rights of EU citizens. After 20 April meeting, Antonio Tajani said that the UK and EU27 timetables fitted well together, with a two-year exit deal negotiation followed by a three-year transition phase. A 10 Downing Street meeting between Theresa May, Michel Barnier and Jean-Claude Juncker took place on 26 April to discuss the withdrawal process. May reiterated the UK's aim for a "deep and special partnership" after Brexit.
On 29 April 2017, immediately after the first round of French presidential elections, the EU27 heads of state unanimously accepted, without discussion,negotiating guidelines prepared by the President of the European Council. The guidelines take the view that Article 50 permits a two-phased negotiation, whereby the UK first needs to agree to a financial commitment and to lifelong benefits for EU citizens in Britain, before the EU27 will entertain negotiations on a future relationship. In the requested first phase of the withdrawal negotiation, the EU27 negotiators demanded the UK pay a "divorce bill", initially estimated as amounting up to £52bn and then, after additional financial demands from Germany, France, and Poland, amounting to £92bn.
Nevertheless, a 4 March 2017 report of the European Union Committee of the House of Lords, stated that if there is no post-Brexit deal at the end of the two-year negotiating period, the UK could withdraw without payment.Similarly, the Prime Minister insisted to EU Commission President Juncker that talks about the future UK-EU relationship should start early and that Britain did not owe any money to the EU under the current treaties.
At 29 April summit, a meeting took place between Michel Barnier and both houses of the Irish parliament on 11 May, where Barnier assured members of Dáil Éireann and Seanad Éireann that Europe would "work with you to avoid a hard border".Barnier went on to say that "the Irish border issue would be one of his three priorities in the negotiations", and that "there is always an answer".
In May 2017, unflattering details of a four-way meeting between Prime Minister Theresa May, Brexit Minister David Davis, EU Commission President Juncker and his chief-of-staff Martin Selmayr were leaked to the German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung, presumably by Martin Selmayr.According to the leaked description, Juncker claimed that Theresa May was "living in another galaxy" when suggesting that British and EU migrant rights could be rapidly negotiated and agreed in the course of June 2017. German Chancellor Angela Merkel concurred the next day by stating that there were "illusions" on the British side. A few days later, Juncker disclaimed responsibility and called the leak a mistake, Der Spiegel magazine reported that Angela Merkel was annoyed with Juncker for the leak, while European Council President Tusk admonished participants to use discretion during the negotiations. The background for German nervousness allegedly is the possibility that Britain may veto EU budget increases, which for example in the immediate term amount to 4 billion euros. A continued British veto would have far-reaching consequences and "will hurt us" according to German MEP Jens Geier.
On 22 May 2017, the Council of the EU authorised its negotiators to start the Brexit talks and it adopted its negotiating directives.The first day of talks took place on 19 June, where Davis and Barnier agreed to prioritise the question of residency rights, while Davis conceded that a discussion of the Northern Irish border would have to await future trade agreements.
The United Kingdom served the withdrawal notice under Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union on 29 March 2017. This started a two-year negotiation period but negotiations did not formally begin until 19 June 2017
The UK Government published several proposals during 2018, including the Chequers plan in July which sought to serve as the basis of the UK-EU trade deal, and a draft Withdrawal Agreement which the UK Government and EU agreed in November 2018. The Chequers plan led to the resignation in July of David Davis as the UK's Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union and his replacement, Dominic Raab, resigned in November after the publication of the draft Withdrawal Agreement. He was replaced by Stephen Barclay. Negotiations over the Irish border question and the Irish backstop were frequently central to the debate around the Withdrawal Agreement.
Upon the approaching end of the two-year negotiation period, in March 2019, Theresa May and European leaders negotiated a delay for the Parliament of the United Kingdom to approve the proposed Withdrawal Agreement. As it was not approved for the third time, a further extension to 31 October 2019 was agreed in April 2019, with an option to terminate UK membership earlier if the Withdrawal Agreement is passed by the UK Parliament before then. Under this extension, the UK must take part in the 2019 European Parliament election scheduled for May 2019 or leave on 1 June 2019.
Two different legal approaches arose in determining the financial element of the Brexit withdrawal agreement and (at least initially) the UK and EU negotiators differed on which would be the more appropriate.From Michel Barnier's point of view, the budget contributions that were agreed by 28 member states have to be paid by 28 member states, until the end of that budget period. David Davis said that the "UK wants to go through the Brexit bill line-by-line to work out what it owes the EU." A leaving state is legally obliged to contribute to the EU budget beyond its membership period or to continue to honour the commitments it made during the (pre-Brexit) budget setting process.
The leaders of France and Germany both stated that the UK would need to agree to terms regarding departure before discussing future relationships.This has been reinforced by EU27 guidelines issued to the remaining 27 countries. The UK has signalled that it may consider paying the EU to attain preferential access to the European Single Market and may offer to pay liabilities on a moral and co-operative basis, even if not legally obliged to do so, to secure a preferential working relationship with the EU.
In March 2017 the Bruegel think tank estimated that the UK would need to pay at least €25.4 billion, but the method of calculation is debatable and their calculations using seven different methods produced estimates between €30 and €45 billion.
Speaking on 20 April 2017, Antonio Tajani said that it was too early to quantify the amount the UK would need to pay and that it was not a bill to leave the EU, it was money needed for farmers and small businesses.
A March 2017 House of Lords report acknowledges that the EU may claim for (1) part of the current budget (which runs from 2014 to 2020) post March 2019, because it was approved by the UK, (2) part of the EU future commitments which amount to €200 billion, and (3) a contribution if the UK is to continue with access to some EU programmes.The report concluded that the UK had no legal obligation to make "exit" payments to the EU if there was no post Brexit deal.
Discussing financial and legal complexities involved in negotiating withdrawal, including settlement of outstanding financial liabilities and division of assets, the report mentions (paragraph 15) that the EU budget is funded by revenue drawn from various sources, governed by the EU's Own Resources Decision (ORD), which was made part of UK law by the European Union (Finance) Act 2015.The revenue includes contributions from import duties and VAT collected by member states. The report also mentions the EU Multiannual Financial Framework for controlling the annual expenditure.
The EU has considerable assets including buildings, equipment and financial instruments, and there is a potential claim by the UK for a portion of these assets.Boris Johnson, the UK's Foreign Secretary, commenting on the Brexit "divorce bill" in May 2017 stated that the valuable EU assets the UK has paid for over the years should be properly valued, and that there were good arguments for including them in the negotiations.
The Bank of England (BoE) has invested in the European Central Bank (ECB) amounting to 14.3374%, representing paid up capital of €55.5 million. The BoE does not participate in any profits (or losses) of the ECB.The BoE has also made loans to the ECB. The ECB set up the European Financial Stability Facility in 2010, which has a borrowing facility of €440bn and in addition used a guarantee from the European Commission and the Budget of the European Union as collateral to borrow a further €60bn. The UK withdrawal will affect the ECB.
The EU has a pension liability of €64 billion (which includes current and former British MEPs as well as current and former employees of the Institutions).
The UK benefits from a rebate which reduces its contribution to the EU budget. The rebate is paid a year in arrears, accordingly the 2019 rebate would be payable in 2020.
The EU drafted an 11-page position paper setting out the essential principles for a financial settlement and the methodology for calculating the obligation but does not estimate the final obligation.
On 11 December 2017, Theresa May confirmed that the UK and the EU had agreed “the scope of commitments, and methods for valuations and adjustments to those values.”
The UK Government's estimate of the financial settlement in March 2019 is £37.8 billion (€41.8 billion).
Concerns have been raised by UK citizens who live in other EU countries, and by citizens from those countries who live in the UK. In May 2017, Michel Barnier stated: "Currently around 3.2 million EU citizens work and live in the UK, and 1.2 million British citizens work and live in the EU."
Issues include rights of movement, citizenship, abode, education, social support and medical treatment, and the payment of pensions; and the extent to which these rights apply to family members.Considerations for UK citizens resident in an EU27 country include their rights to work or live in a different EU27 country. Beyond the 27 EU countries, workers have certain freedom of movement rights to/from Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Switzerland.
"Associate citizenship", suggested by EU27 negotiator Guy Verhofstadt, would allow UK nationals to volunteer individually for EU citizenship, enabling them to continue to work and live on the continent. Jean-Claude Juncker, president of the European Commission, is not opposed to the idea.
Antonio Tajani spoke after a meeting with Theresa May on 20 April 2017, saying "the issue of reciprocal EU citizen rights should be negotiated 'immediately' with a view to getting an agreement by the end of the year."The European Commission published a position paper on "Essential Principles on Citizens' Rights" on 12 June 2017, proposing that current and future family members of European nationals in the UK would keep their rights to settle in their residence country at any time after Britain's withdrawal. Speaking in advance of publication of the paper, David Davis described the demands as "ridiculously high". The UK government published their policy paper "Safeguarding the position of EU citizens in the UK and UK nationals in the EU" on 26 June. The policy paper proposed that EU citizens living in Britain will be required to apply for inclusion on a "settled status" register if they wish to remain in the country after Brexit.
By the end of September 2017 progress had been made on several of the 60 points which became green, while 13 out of the 60 points remain red. Three points (points #14, #15, and #16 related to monitoring and CJEU) have to be addressed at governance level. Few points remain to be clarified (that is yellow).On this basis European parliament will have to assess if sufficient progress has been made.
As of October 2018, UK residents in the EU have not yet had their fates decided on. On 16 October 2018, just before departing for the EU27–UK summit in Brussels, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, speaking to the German parliament, asked "How do we treat the 100,000 British citizens in Germany on the day after Brexit if there is no deal?", without supplying an answer.
The general rule for losing EU citizenship is that European citizenship is lost if member state nationality is lost,but the automatic loss of EU citizenship as a result of a member state withdrawing from the EU is the subject of debate. The situation of a person acquiring EU citizenship when the UK joined the EU in 1973 compared to a person born in the UK after 1973 and was therefore born into EU citizenship, may differ. It may be necessary for the ECJ to rule on these issues.
In a 2017 decision, the ECJ ruled that the parent(s) of a child with EU nationality are entitled to rights of residence, even if both are non-EU citizens.This may have consequential effects for UK residents who have young children and wish to live in the EU27 territory post Brexit, but this remains to be tested.
Until the UK effectively withdraws from the EU in 2019 or at another agreed date, the current system of free movement of labour between the EU27 and the UK remains in place.
The report of the House of Commons Exiting the European Union Committee on The Government's negotiating objectives, published in April 2017,proposed (paragraphs 20 and 123) that the future system for EU migration should meet the needs of different sectors of the UK economy, including those employing scientists, bankers, vets, care workers, health service professionals and seasonal agriculture workers.
Theresa May, answering press questions on 5 April 2017, commented that the free movement of labour would not end in March 2019; an implementation period of possibly five years would give business and government time to adjust.
The UK currently charges an annual levy of up to £1,000 for each non-EU citizen employed within the UK.Proposals are under consideration to increase this 'immigration skills charge' to £2,000 p.a. and to implement a similar levy on EU citizens employed in the UK.
According to an unconfirmed newspaper report, a leaked Home Office paper has a proposal that the UK will end the free movement of labour of low-skilled workers immediately after Brexit, focusing on highly skilled EU workers instead.The proposal would limit lower-skilled EU migrants' residency permits to a maximum of two years, and the implementation of a new immigration system ending the right to settle in Britain for most European migrants while placing tough restrictions on their rights to bring over family members. Those in "high-skilled occupations" could be given permission to work in the UK for a period of three to five years.
Immigration is one topic requiring partnership between EU and UK, as according to Theresa May, "Mass migration and terrorism are but two examples of the challenges to our shared European interests and values that we can only solve in partnership".
In the context of Brexit, the question of migration might contain two subtopics: on one hand migrations between EU including UK and third countries which might be dealt with at a local level; and on the other hand migration between EU and UK once UK has become a third country which was discussed for the withdrawal agreement.
The concept of European Court of Justice competence creates complications. Some pro-Brexiteers believe the Court of Justice might be completely removed from the UK landscape. Various other opinions consider that the Court of Justice or some equivalent should be able to rule on remaining issues after Brexit (for instance between a European and a British stakeholder), at least in respect of the TEU (Treaty on European Union), European Union citizens, or access to the European Single Market.
After the 2017 negotiations, in February 2018 the European Commission Draft Withdrawal Agreement on the withdrawal of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland from the European Union and the European Atomic Energy Communityconsider for instance that:
Documents setting out how the Brexit will affect parts of the British economy were set up for the government, "the most comprehensive picture of our economy on this issue" containing "excruciating detail" according to Brexit Secretary David Davis. The ministers were reluctant to publish them but in November 2017, a vote in Parliament allowed lawmakers to read them under controlled conditions to avoid news leaks. They were released online on 21 December 2017 but lawmakers were unimpressed: "Most of this could be found on Wikipedia or with a quick Google search", said Labour's David Lammy, "these documents [were made] in a couple of weeks. They look like copy and paste essay crises."
Without a trade agreement in place, UK trade with the EU would be governed by the World Trade Organisation's Bali Package. This would lead to common tariffs and non-tariff barriers being imposed by the EU27 upon the UK's access to the European Single Market, because the Market is also a customs union. However, the UK would then have an opportunity to control immigration as well as develop its own trade regulations.
The UK is not permitted to hold trade talks until after Brexit is concluded, however the UK can do preparatory work with other countries regarding the UK's future trading relationships; this is not to the liking of some EU27 countries.Before Britain leaves the EU, they may put trade agreements in place with non-EU countries.
Only the EU can act in areas where it has exclusive competence, such as the customs union and common commercial policy. In those areas member states may not act independently.The UK can still negotiate its own bilateral investment protection treaties subject to Commission authorisation.
Strategic controls on military goods are primarily a member state competence. As a result, member states themselves negotiate multilateral or bilateral agreements on the strategic aspects of trade in defense goods.
The EU27 wish to exclude the UK from sitting in on trade negotiations held by the EU during the period ending March 2019, seeing the UK as a competitor. Theresa May rejected this idea, saying "While we're members of the European Union we would expect our obligations but also our rights to be honoured in full."
The Geographical indications and traditional specialties in the European Union, known as protected designation of origin (PDO) is applied internationally via bilateral agreements. Without an agreement with the EU27, UK producers of products such as the Cornish pasty, Scotch whisky and Jersey Royal potatoes are at risk of being copied.
This section needs to be updated.May 2019)(
The EU27 have stated that UK fish suppliers could lose tariff-free access to the continent unless EU countries have continued access to UK waters after Brexit.
The Irish agricultural sector is heavily dependent on UK markets for its exports.
Investment banks may want to have new or expanded offices up and running inside the EU27 bloc before the UK's departure in March 2019, with Frankfurt and Dublin the possible favourites.Ireland's investment arm, IDA Ireland, witnessed an increase in inquiries from London-based financial groups considering to open up on an office in Dublin by the end of 2016, mostly coming from North American companies. In May 2017, JP Morgan became the first major bank to officially choose Dublin to transfer some of its personnel and operations from its London office.
Lloyd's of London have confirmed that they will open a subsidiary in Brussels, hoping to ensure continuation of their continental business which generates 11% of its premiums.
The situation may be different when it comes to the fund management industry, as British asset owners, notably UK pension funds, often constitute an incommensurate share of total turnover for German, French, Dutch and other Continental European asset managers.
This imbalance could potentially give Britain some negotiating leverage e.g. power of retorsion in case the EU attempts to impose an abrupt cancellation of the mutually-binding obligations and advantages pertaining to the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive 2004 ("fund passporting"). Research conducted by the World Pensions Council (WPC) shows that
"Assets owned by UK pension funds are more than 11 times bigger than those of all German and French pension funds put together […] If need be, at the first hint of threat to the City of London, Her Majesty's Government should be in a position to respond very forcefully."
The London Stock Exchange issued a warning over a proposal by the EU to allow euro-denominated transactions to be cleared only within the EU eurozone, claiming it would increase business costs by €100bn over 5 years and isolate the euro capital market.
The letter of 29 March 2017 giving the UK's notice of intention to withdraw from the EU stated "In security terms a failure to reach agreement would mean our cooperation in the fight against crime and terrorism would be weakened."This was seen by some as a threat. On 31 March, Boris Johnson, the UK Foreign Secretary, confirmed that the "UK commitment to EU security is unconditional".
The call by the United States to other members of NATO to increase their defence expenditure to the 2% of GDP level coincides in timing with Brexit. The UK is the second largest contributor to NATO defence, one of only five to meet the 2% level and one of only two EU members who have nuclear weapons. The possibility of a new Franco-German partnership to fill the vacuum left by Britain has been raised as a possibility and post Brexit an EU military headquarters, previously vetoed by the UK, may be created.The UK is fully committed to NATO.
The UK government's negotiating policy when the negotiating period started on 29 March 2017 included remaining at the vanguard of science and innovation, and seeking continued close collaboration with the UK's European partners.
In the Great Repeal Bill white paper published on 30 March 2017, the UK government stated "The Government is committed to engaging with the Crown Dependencies, Gibraltar and the other Overseas Territories as we leave the EU." ch.5:
Robin Walker MP, a junior minister at the Department for Exiting the European Union, is responsible for managing the relationship between the overseas territories and Parliament in their discussion with the EU27.
Brexit raised issues around sovereignty for Gibraltar, the only British Overseas Territory in the EU.Gibraltarians voted to stay in the European Union by 96%. Spain claims sovereignty over Gibraltar; however, in 2002 Gibraltarians voted 99% to keep British sovereignty.
The EU27 draft guidelines allow Spain a veto over any effect that the Brexit agreement has as regards Gibraltar. The guidelines state: "After the United Kingdom leaves the Union, no agreement between the EU and the United Kingdom may apply to the territory of Gibraltar without the agreement between the Kingdom of Spain and the United Kingdom."
The Crown dependencies are not part of either the UK or the EU. They have a unique constitutional relationship both with the UK and, as encapsulated in Protocol 3 to the UK's Treaty of Accession, with the EU.They have no voting rights in EU or UK referendums or elections and no international voice, the UK government having the responsibility to act for the dependencies on foreign matters. Oliver Heald QC MP is responsible for managing the relationship between the Islands and Parliament in their discussion with the EU27.
This section needs to be updated.July 2019)(
The European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018 which became law in June 2018 allows for various outcomes including no negotiated settlement. It authorises the government to bring into force, by order made under section 25, the provisions that fix "exit day" and the repeal of the European Communities Act 1972, but exit day must be the same day and time as when the EU Treaties are to cease to apply to the UK.
If no withdrawal agreement is in place at the end of the period set under Article 50, there will be no transition period. In such a "no deal" scenario, EU law (in particular, the Single Market and Customs Union) will cease to apply to the UK/EU relationship.
The EU would prefer a Brexit with a deal.Nonetheless, even without a deal, the Commission believes that UK and EU may soon relaunch trade negotiations.
On 28 February 2019, Parliament approved by 502 votes Labour former minister Yvette Cooper's bid to pin Theresa May to commitments including allowing MPs to delay Brexit if her deal is rejected again.
On 4 April 2019, the European Parliament voted to confirm UK citizens will continue to benefit from visa-free travel to member states after a no-deal Brexit. MEPs voted 502 votes to 81 in favour of the concession – provided EU nationals enjoy the same conditions when travelling to the UK.
An EU document on Preparedness outlines the plans related to various issues (with or without withdrawal agreement), and another on Contingency describes measures to answer the consequences of a No deal.
To answer the consequences of a no deal Brexit, some players are involved in contingency planning and preparedness (but not panic).To limit the consequences of a no deal scenario, some companies, such as Airbus and Rolls-Royce, are stockpiling spares.
In the Netherlands, around 1,000 customs officials are being recruited to manage the border with UK after the no deal Brexit.
In the UK the need for new customs agents is estimated at 5,000.In Ireland, the need for new customs agents is estimated at 1,000.
The UK is considering converting some part of the M20 motorway into a parking lot for trucks, to manage a possible 17-mile (around 25-kilometer) line of traffic, as planned by the Dover port authority.
The EU Commission has published 68 notices to help various players to be aware of the Brexit consequences.The Commission is also considering notifying its international partners for international agreements that involved the UK as a member state, in case of no deal.
Over the course of August, September and October 2018, the UK Government published a series of technical notices and further guidance on preparing for a "no deal" scenario.The UK Treasury department has used the code name "Operation Yellowhammer" for no-deal contingency planning. On 18 December 2018, the UK cabinet agreed to proceed with a further phase of "no deal" planning.
On 25 March 2018, the EU published a press release outlining its preparedness for a possible no-deal scenario,as well as a factsheet explaining border checks once British citizens become non-EU citizens.
In June 2017, a Parliamentary inquiry concluded that "the possibility of 'no deal' is real enough to justify planning for it. The Government has produced no evidence, either to this inquiry or in its White Paper, to indicate that it is giving the possibility of 'no deal' the level of consideration that it deserves, or is contemplating any serious contingency planning. This is all the more urgent if the Government is serious in its assertion that it will walk away from a 'bad' deal."
The UK government has consistently said that it will aim for the "best possible deal" but that "no deal is better than a bad deal". This position was restated in the Conservative Party manifesto for the 2017 general election.In July 2017, Michel Barnier said that "a fair deal is better than no deal", because "In the case of Brexit, 'no deal' is a return to a distant past".
French Prime Minister Édouard Philippe said in July 2018: "The more we think the worst should be avoided, the more we think it's not impossible it could eventually happen".That same month, the British (UK) white paper began both sides wondering if the no deal scenario is more likely rather than possible.
In June 2017, a "no-deal" Brexit was likened by General Council of the Bar, a lawyers' interest body, to "falling over the cliff-edge".According to the IMF, the no deal Brexit could create economic pain across Europe, with no winner. The most affected country would be UK, according to the IMF: the IMF consider that UK and Ireland could lose 4% of their GDP, while close countries such as the Netherlands, Denmark and Belgium could lose 1% of GDP.
In September 2017, the BBC reported that there was little evidence of UK government preparations for a "No Deal" scenario: "our government is not behaving like it is really preparing for No Deal – and the EU27 can surely see it."
In her 4 October 2017 speech at the Conservative Party Conference, UK Prime Minister Theresa May repeated her position that "no deal is better than a bad deal" and emphasized that "It is our responsibility as a government to prepare for every eventuality. And let me reassure everyone in this hall – that is exactly what we are doing."In her 9 October 2017 statement in the House of Commons, May said that Britain could operate as an "independent trading nation" after Brexit if no trade deal is reached with the EU.
The no deal scenario has been described by Nick Timothy as leaving the EU [with Britain] in "chaos" or not leaving the bloc at all, which he says would be a "national humiliation" on a par with the Suez Crisis.
Sir Martin Donnelly feels that no deal would be dangerous:while no deal makes trade only dependent on World Trade Organisation terms which do not include services—80% of the British economy—he believes that no deal "could mean an awful lot of legal uncertainty and that's very bad for businesses, for jobs, for investment in Britain".
In the Scottish Centre on European Relations paper "Brexit Uncertainty, Scotland and the UK in 2018", a conclusion is reached that the delivery of a no deal Brexit could raise support for a second independence referendum in Scotland.
Nonetheless, according to Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell there are enough people in the House of Commons to prevent some no-agreement exit.
According to Dominic Cummings, campaign director of Vote Leave, "If there's no deal, there will be significant problems that were completely avoidable".
|* Source, Olivier Wayman report, La Tribune pounds have been converted to euros, on 12 March 2018|
Aviation would be particularly affected if the European Common Aviation Area and EU–US Open Skies Agreement no longer applied to the UK after a "no-deal" Brexit, since World Trade Organisation rules do not cover that sector,implying that the following day a British plane could not land at an EU airport. UK government said in September 2018 that in case of no deal on aviation, UK would allow EU airlines to use British airports anyway, and expect EU countries to reciprocate.
The no deal scenario could create a disruption in transport between the United Kingdom and the European Union: for instance, with delays generated by the customs, sanitary and phytosanitary controls for road transport and ports.
The National Police Coordination Centre has warned that no deal would result in civil disorder at the UK's ports and borders, a "real possibility" of calling upon military assistance, a rise in crime (particularly theft and robbery) and widespread illness and disease following food and drug shortages (including NHS supplies). Police officers who are EU nationals may potentially be unable to hold a warrant card (which would leave the Metropolitan Police 750 officers short), and the ability for the police to deal with criminality from non-UK residents would be undermined as the UK "falls out of the various treaties such as the European arrest warrant, Schengen information system and membership of Europol".Sara Thornton of the NPCC said, "Existing EU tools allow us to respond quickly and intelligently to crime and terrorism in the UK and the EU – they make us better at protecting the public. The alternatives we are planning to use, where they exist, are without exception slower, more bureaucratic and ultimately less effective." Finding out if a suspect has criminal convictions will take much longer.
It has been suggested by supporters of Brexit – including Boris Johnson – that, in the event of a no-deal scenario, paragraph 5b Article 24 of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade might be used to avoid the need (under WTO rules) for the EU and UK to apply tariffs to their mutual trade. This position has been criticised as unrealistic by Mark Carney, Liam Fox and others, as paragraph 5c requires an agreement with the EU be in place for paragraph 5b to be of use, and would not cover services.
Most of the major UK political parties support the idea of a transition period for applying temporary trade arrangements after the end of the UK's membership of the EU.
According to a speech by Michel Barnier in September 2017, the EU would have to define the conditions for a transitional period, if the UK requests one, and the transition period would be part of the Article 50 withdrawal agreement.
Following an unprecedented vote on 4 December 2018, MPs ruled that the UK government was in contempt of parliament for refusing to provide to Parliament, the full legal advice it had been given on the effect of its proposed terms for withdrawal.The key point within the advice covered the legal effect of the "backstop" agreement governing Northern Ireland, the Republic of Ireland, and the rest of the UK, in regard to the customs border between the EU and UK, and its implications for the Good Friday agreement which had led to the end of the Troubles in Northern Ireland, and specifically, whether the UK would be certain of being able to leave the EU in a practical sense, under the draft proposals.
The following day, the advice was published. The question asked was, "What is the legal effect of the UK agreeing to the Protocol to the Withdrawal Agreement on Ireland and Northern Ireland in particular its effect in conjunction with Articles 5 and 184 of the main Withdrawal Agreement?" The advice given was that:
While negotiations between the United Kingdom and the European Union were in progress, Barnier, as the EU's chief negotiator, speaking in Rome to Committees of the Italian Parliament on 21 September 2017, stated that a future trade deal with the United Kingdom is the trade deal which will be negotiated after sufficient progress has been made on the withdrawal deal. Barnier commented that the EU will want to negotiate a future trade deal with the United Kingdom, because trade with the United Kingdom will continue.At the same time Barnier said "the future trade deal with the United Kingdom will be particular, as it will be less about building convergence, and more about controlling future divergence. This is key to establishing fair competition."
The United Kingdom's prime minister, in a speech at the Santa Maria Novella church in Florence on 22 September 2017,proposed an economic partnership between the UK and the EU which respects both the freedoms and principles of the EU, and the wishes of the British people. At the same time she re-affirmed that after the UK leaves the EU a period of implementation would be in their mutual interest, to be agreed under Article 50 for a strictly time-limited period.
The European parliament voted a Brexit resolution (the European Parliament resolution of 14 March 2018 on the framework of the future EU-UK relationship (2018/2573(RSP)) with 544 MEP against 110 (with 51 abstentions). The 14 page document states that an association agreement between EU and UK could be an adequate framework for the future. This resolution proposes that the agreement address four domains: trade, interior security, foreign and defense policy collaboration, and thematic cooperation (for instance for research and innovation). The resolution also urges the UK to present a clear position on all outstanding issues pertaining to its orderly withdrawal.
On 13 November 2018, the UK and EU reached an agreement on the wording of the Withdrawal Agreement (WA) and Political Declaration.The Withdrawal agreement covers the settlement of UK's financial commitments, the Border between NI and Ireland, the status of EU citizens in the UK, and the conditions for the transition period. The Political Declaration is effectively a statement of intent between the EU and UK to proceed to negotiate to a full and final trade deal which will apply after the transition period. It outlines the shape of the future relationship between the EU and UK, but is not a legally binding trade agreement. On 14 November 2018, May's Cabinet approved the draft agreements. Shortly after it was approved by the British Cabinet, the European Commission published the 585 pages draft withdrawal agreement.
In December 2018, Secretary for Work and Pensions Amber Rudd suggested that a Norway-plus model – the membership of the European Economic Area (EEA) – could be an alternative if Theresa May's Brexit deal is rejected.
Withdrawal from the European Union is the legal and political process whereby an EU member state ceases to be a member of the Union. Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union (TEU) states that "Any Member State may decide to withdraw from the Union in accordance with its own constitutional requirements".
The referendum on EU membership took place on 23 June 2016. Opinion polling for the United Kingdom European Union membership referendum was ongoing in the months between the announcement of a referendum and the referendum polling day. Polls on the general principle of Britain's membership of the European Union were carried out for a number of years prior to the referendum. Opinion polls of voters in general tended to show roughly equal proportions in favour of remaining and leaving. Polls of business leaders, scientists, and lawyers showed majorities in favour of remaining. Among non-British citizens in other EU member states, polling suggested that a majority were in favour of the UK remaining in the EU in principle, but that a similarly sized majority believed that if the UK were only able to remain in the EU on renegotiated terms then it should leave.
The European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018 is an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom that provides for repealing the European Communities Act 1972, and for Parliamentary approval of the withdrawal agreement being negotiated between HM Government and the European Union.
The European Union Act 2017 is an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom to empower the Prime Minister to give to the Council of the European Union the formal notice – required by Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union – for starting negotiations for the United Kingdom's withdrawal from the European Union.
The effect of Brexit on Gibraltar concerns the status of Gibraltar after withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union. The UK voted to leave the EU in the 2016 referendum and formally notified the EU of its intention to withdraw in March 2017. Gibraltar is not part of the UK but, as a British Overseas Territory, participated in the referendum and will, by default, cease to be a part of the EU upon the UK's withdrawal.
The United Kingdom's post-Brexit relationship with the remaining European Union members could take several forms. A research paper presented to the UK Parliament in July 2013 proposed a number of alternatives to membership which would continue to allow access to the EU internal market. These include remaining in the European Economic Area (EEA) as a European Free Trade Association (EFTA) member, or seeking to negotiate bilateral terms more akin to the Swiss model with a series of interdependent sectoral agreements. The exit from the EU without EEA membership or a trade agreement is known as the WTO option.
The Brexit financial settlement is a sum of money due to the European Union (EU) from the United Kingdom (UK) when it leaves the EU to settle the UK's share of the financing of all the obligations undertaken while it was a member of the EU. In the Withdrawal Agreement negotiations, it is officially referred to as the "financial settlement".
The European Union Bill 2017–19 is the planned name of a future bill of the Parliament of the United Kingdom that proposes to enshrine any Withdrawal Agreement between the UK and the EU in domestic law. The Withdrawal Agreement is the subject of ongoing and future Brexit negotiations and will not be detailed until the negotiations are completed.
The impact of Brexit on the Irish border derives from the fact that, after Brexit, the Republic of Ireland–United Kingdom border on the island of Ireland would be the only significant external EU land border between the United Kingdom and the European Union, in particular the impact it may have on the economy and people of the island were customs or immigration checks to be put in place at the border. The UK voted to leave the European Union in a referendum on 23 June 2016 and all parties have stated that they want to avoid a hard border in Ireland, due particularly to the historically sensitive nature of the border. It was prioritised as one of the three most important areas to resolve in order to reach a Withdrawal Agreement. The impact of failure to agree terms for withdrawal may have on the economy and people of the island, were customs or immigration checks to be put in place at the border, would be severe.
The future relationship between the United Kingdom and the European Union is a UK Government white paper concerning Brexit, published on 12 July 2018 by the Prime Minister, Theresa May. The paper was based on a three-page cabinet agreement from 6 July and laid out the type of future relationship between UK and European Union (EU) that the UK sought to achieve in the Brexit negotiations.
Sabine Weyand is a senior EU official, of German nationality. She has played a prominent role in trade negotiations, as an EU co-negotiator for the TTIP and CETA agreements, and in EU Brexit negotiations.
The Brexit withdrawal agreement is a proposed agreement between the United Kingdom and the European Union on how to implement Brexit. It covers such matters as money, citizens rights, border arrangements and dispute resolution. It also contains a transition period, and an outline of the future relationship between the UK and the EU. Published on 14 November 2018, it was a result of the Brexit negotiations. The agreement was endorsed by the leaders of the 27 remaining EU countries and the UK Government led by Prime Minister Theresa May, but faced opposition in the UK parliament, whose approval was necessary for ratification. On 10 December 2018, May deferred the vote scheduled on 11 December, because she thought it "would be rejected by a significant margin". On 15 January 2019, the House of Commons rejected the withdrawal agreement by a vote of 432 to 202. The Agreement was rejected again on 12 March 2019 by the House of Commons on a vote of 391 to 242, and rejected a third time of 29 March 2019 by 344 votes to 286.
The Northern Ireland Protocol, also called the Irish Backstop, is a standalone treaty appended to the proposed Brexit withdrawal agreement enabling the UK to leave the EU, that aims to prevent a hard border in Ireland by keeping Northern Ireland in some aspects of the European Union Customs Union and Single Market, even if there is no trade agreement between the UK and EU at the end of the transition period. Although the Irish government and Nationalists in Northern Ireland strongly support the protocol, Unionist opposition is seen as a major reason for Westminster's failure to ratify the Agreement.
A referendum on the Brexit withdrawal agreement, also referred to as a "second referendum" or a "people's vote", has been proposed by a number of politicians and pressure groups as a way to break the deadlock in Parliament surrounding the meaningful vote on the Brexit deal.
Brexit negotiations are taking place between the United Kingdom and the European Union for the withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union following the United Kingdom European Union membership referendum on 23 June 2016. The negotiating period began on 29 March 2017 when the United Kingdom served the withdrawal notice under Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union. The period for negotiation stated in Article 50 is two years from notification, unless an extension is agreed. In March 2019, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom Theresa May and European Leaders negotiated a two week delay for the Parliament of the United Kingdom to agree upon The Government's Brexit Treaty, moving the date from 29 March 2019 to 12 April 2019. Negotiations between the United Kingdom and the European Union regarding Brexit began in June 2017.
Brexit negotiations are taking place between the United Kingdom and the European Union for the withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union following the United Kingdom European Union membership referendum on 23 June 2016. The negotiating period began on 29 March 2017 when the United Kingdom served the withdrawal notice under Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union. The period for negotiation stated in Article 50 is two years from notification, unless an extension is agreed. In March 2019, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom Theresa May and European Leaders negotiated a two week delay for the Parliament of the United Kingdom to agree upon The Government's Brexit Treaty, moving the date from 29 March 2019 to 12 April 2019. Negotiations between the United Kingdom and the European Union regarding Brexit began in June 2017, with the following negotiations taking place during 2018.
Brexit negotiations took place between the United Kingdom and the European Union during 2017 and 2018 for the withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union following the United Kingdom European Union membership referendum on 23 June 2016. The negotiating period began on 29 March 2017 when the United Kingdom served the withdrawal notice under Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union. The period for negotiation stated in Article 50 is two years from notification, unless an extension is agreed. In March 2019, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom Theresa May and European leaders negotiated a fortnight's delay for the Parliament of the United Kingdom to ratify the Brexit withdrawal agreement, moving the date from 29 March 2019 to 12 April 2019. On 10 April 2019, a further half-year extension was agreed between the UK and the EU27 at the EU summit, until 31 October 2019.
In order to succeed we need discretion, moderation and a maximum of goodwill.