EU Position Papers – Sep 7 2017
The EU has published a number of Position Papers, which outline the positions held by the EU in various issues related to the Brexit negotiations, for discussion at the Council Working party (Art. 50) meeting held on 7 September 2017. These papers will be presented to the UK for future rounds of negotiation.
Papers cover the following topics:
The withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union will create uncertainty in relation to administrative procedures in the area of public procurement on-going on the withdrawal date, as to which law should govern the completion of those procedures and how tenderers and contractors from the EU27 or the United Kingdom should be treated by contracting authorities from, respectively, the United Kingdom or the EU27 Member States.
The Withdrawal Agreement should ensure that administrative procedures in the area of public procurement on-going on the withdrawal date continue to be carried out in accordance with the relevant provisions of Union law until their completion, and in accordance with the principle of nondiscrimination.
The European Council Guidelines following the United Kingdom’s notification under Article 50 TEU and the subsequent directives for the negotiation of an agreement with the United Kingdom on its withdrawal from the European Union include specific provisions relating to the unique circumstances on the island of Ireland (paragraphs 11 and 14 respectively). In its resolution of 5 April 2017, the European Parliament also recognises the unique position of and the special circumstances confronting the island of Ireland.
Issues unique to Ireland include the protection of the gains of the peace process and of the Good Friday Agreement (‘Belfast Agreement’) in all its parts, the maintenance of existing bilateral agreements and arrangements between the United Kingdom and Ireland including the Common Travel Area, and specific issues arising from Ireland’s unique geographic situation, including the aim of avoiding a hard border between Ireland and Northern Ireland.
The invisible border on the island of Ireland is one of the major achievements and societal benefits of the Peace Process. Border issues are broader than economic questions. The physical border itself was a symbol of division and conflict.
As of the withdrawal date, the United Kingdom will no longer be part of the customs and tax (VAT and excise) territory of the Union. Consequently movements of goods between the UK and the EU 27 will constitute third country trade. The principles outlined in this paper aim to ensure an orderly withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the Union in respect of customs related matters.
It is recalled that the United Kingdom’s access to networks, information systems and databases established by Union law is, as a general rule, terminated on the date of withdrawal.
The United Kingdom or entities in the United Kingdom may keep and continue to use data or information received/processed in the United Kingdom before the withdrawal date and referred to below only if the conditions set out in this paper are fulfilled. Otherwise such data or information (including any copies thereof) should be erased or destroyed.
The principles set out in this paper should also apply, mutatis mutandis, to personal data, data or information which was received /processed by the United Kingdom or entities in the United Kingdom after the withdrawal date pursuant to the Withdrawal Agreement.
The withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union will create uncertainty for UK and EU27 stakeholders alike in relation to the scope of protection in the United Kingdom of certain intellectual property rights; to the treatment of applications for certain rights and to the exhaustion of rights conferred by intellectual property rights. This uncertainty will significantly affect the conditions under which goods that are placed on the market in the Union before the withdrawal date could continue to circulate between the EU27 and the UK.