Following a long EU Council meeting on 10 April 2019, EU27 leaders agreed to delay Brexit until 31 October 2019. Their decision was taken in agreement with the UK.
EU27 leaders took note of the letter sent by UK Prime Minister Theresa May asking for a further extension to the Article 50 period. They agreed to an extension to allow for the ratification of the withdrawal agreement.
Such an extension should last only as long as necessary and, in any event, no longer than 31 October. If the withdrawal agreement is ratified by both parties before this date, the withdrawal will take place on the first day of the following month.
In the EU Council (Article 50) conclusions, EU27 leaders stressed that the UK will have to hold EU Parliament elections if it is still a member of the EU between 23 and 26 May 2019. If the UK fails to hold the elections, it will leave the EU on 1 June 2019.
The EU Council (Article 50) reiterated that there could be no reopening of the agreement. Any unilateral commitment, statement or other act should be compatible with the letter and the spirit of the withdrawal agreement. Leaders also noted that the extension could not be used to start negotiations on the future relationship.
However, if the position of the United Kingdom were to evolve, the European Council is prepared to reconsider the Political Declaration on the future relationship.
Finally, the heads of state or government took note of the UK’s commitment to act in a constructive and responsible manner during this time.
The United Kingdom shall facilitate the achievement of the Union’s tasks and refrain from any measure which could jeopardise the attainment of the Union’s objectives, in particular when participating in the decision-making processes of the Union.
The EU Council will review progress at its meeting in June 2019.
European Council (Article 50) conclusions, 10/04/2019
European Council decision extending the period under Article 50 TEU, 11/04/2019