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UK – EU Withdrawal Agreement

On 24 January 2020, following the Royal Assent given for the EU (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill, the UK Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, has signed the Withdrawal Agreement – formerly known as “The Agreement on the Withdrawal of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland from the European Union and the European Atomic Energy Community“.

Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, said:

The signing of the Withdrawal Agreement is a fantastic moment, which finally delivers the result of the 2016 referendum and brings to an end far too many years of argument and division.

We can now move forward as one country – with a Government focused upon delivering better public services, greater opportunity and unleashing the potential of every corner of our brilliant United Kingdom, while building a strong new relationship with the EU as friends and sovereign equals.

In Brussels, EU Council President Charles Michel and EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen also signed the Withdrawal Agreement.

The Withdrawal Agreement is an international treaty between the UK and the EU.

The EU Parliament will hold a vote on the agreement on 29 January. Once the EU Parliament has given its consent, the Council will adopt, by written procedure, the decision on the conclusion of the agreement on behalf of the EU.

A copy of the agreement, as published in the The Official Journal of the European Union Volume 62, 12 November 2019 is available from

https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/PDF/?uri=OJ:C:2019:384I:FULL&from=EN
and a local copy is available

Official Journal of the European Union C 384 I (pdf)

Further information is available on the UK Government website at

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/new-withdrawal-agreement-and-political-declaration

Deal Agreed ?

Both Boris Johnson and Jean-Claude Junker have made statements this morning indicating that an agreement has been reached between the UK and the EU on on a new (revised) deal for leaving the EU.

It’s somewhat ironic, however, that it is necessary to retrieve the relevant documents from an EU website !!

Here is the document

https://ec.europa.eu/commission/sites/beta-political/files/revised_withdrawal_agreement_including_protocol_on_ireland_and_nothern_ireland.pdf

Revised texts agreed at negotiators’ level for: – The Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland included in the Withdrawal Agreement and the consequential technical adaptations to Article 184 “Negotiations on the future relationship” and Article 185 “Entry into force and application” of the Agreement on the withdrawal of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland from the European Union and the European Atomic Energy Community
(“Withdrawal Agreement”).

These revised texts are:

  • Intended to replace the corresponding provisions included in the last version of the Withdrawal Agreement published in OJ C144 I of 25.4.2019;
  • Subject to legal revision.

This document contains the revisions/changes to the original withdrawal agreement, the rest of the original agreement as negotiated by Theresa May still stands.

Revised Withdrawal Agreement (copy pdf)

UPDATE

Documents are also available from the Government web-site at

The United Kingdom and European Union negotiators have reached an agreement in principle on a new New Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland and Political Declaration. The new Withdrawal Agreement sets out the terms of the UK’s exit from the European Union, with changes to the Northern Ireland Protocol to remove the so-called backstop and replace it with arrangements that meet the Government’s objectives.

The new Political Declaration sets out the framework for the future relationship between the European Union and the United Kingdom and reflects the Government’s ambition to conclude an ambitious, broad, deep and flexible free trade agreement with the EU, accompanied by a comprehensive and balanced security partnership.

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/new-protocol-on-irelandnorthern-ireland-and-political-declaration

and copies

Unilateral Declaration on Consent (pdf)

Revised Political Declaration (pdf)

Revised_Protocol to the Withdrawal Agreement (pdf)

PM Theresa May writes in the Grimsby Telegraph 08 March 2019

PM Theresa May wrote an article for the Grimsby Telegraph newspaper which was originally published on 08 March 2019.

In the Summer of 2016, people in Grimsby voted for change.

You voted to leave the European Union and take back control of our borders, laws, money and trade.

You voted to leave the Common Fisheries Policy which has failed this famous fishing town, like so many of Britain’s coastal communities. And you voted for real improvements in your local area, as part of a country that truly works for everyone.

Almost three years on, I know many of you are fed up that instead of delivering this mandate for change, Parliament remains deadlocked debating it. I share that frustration. It is profoundly wrong that having given the decision to you, and having been elected to Parliament in 2017 on manifestos overwhelmingly committed to leaving with a deal, the question of whether your MPs will deliver on that referendum is still hanging in the balance.

That is why the Meaningful Vote next Tuesday is such a critical moment. MPs will have to decide whether to back the Brexit deal – or to reject it. Back it, and the UK will leave the European Union. Reject it and we do not know what the consequences will be. We may not leave the EU for many months; we may leave without the protections that the deal provides; or we may never leave at all.

The deal before Parliament next week ends free movement, ends our vast payments to the EU and ends the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice in the UK.

It enables a harbour like Grimsby , the largest by tonnage in the UK, to expand its operation as we strike free trade deals with countries all over the world. It frees our farmers from the Common Agricultural Policy and means restoring full sovereign control of our waters so we can decide as an independent coastal state who fishes in them.

PM speech in Grimsby, 8 March 2019

by Politicker 0 Comments

Thank you Matthew for that introduction and thank you to Ørsted for hosting us today.

Your work in offshore wind does not just provide skilled jobs here in Grimsby, it makes a direct contribution to the UK’s efforts to reduce our carbon emissions and protect our environment. Achieving the economic benefits of the global shift to sustainable green growth is one of the four Grand Challenges in our Modern Industrial Strategy. The UK is the world-leader in offshore wind, and yesterday we launched our Offshore Wind Sector Deal to build on that success. As an international company investing in the UK, Ørsted is making a major contribution to that success and I am delighted to be with you today.

Next week, Members of Parliament in Westminster face a crucial choice. Whether to back the Brexit deal – or to reject it. Back it and the UK will leave the European Union. Reject it and no one knows what will happen. We may not leave the EU for many months. We may leave without the protections that the deal provides. We may never leave at all. The only certainty would be ongoing uncertainty. Months more spent arguing about Brexit, when we could be focusing on improving our NHS, our schools and our communities.

It will be for the 630-odd MPs at Westminster who will be voting next week to take this decision. But they will take it on your behalf – and on behalf of tens of millions of people across the UK. Parliament gave the decision to leave or remain in the European Union to you. Thirty-three and a half million people took part in the referendum – the biggest turnout for a generation. The result was close, but it was clear. If it had gone the other way, we would be staying in. But the decision was to leave – and that is what we must do.

PM statement to the House of Commons: 14 January 2019

Prime Minister Theresa May’s statement in the House of Commons on the Withdrawal Agreement and Political Declaration on 14 January 2019

This is the Statement in full:

With permission, Mr Speaker, I would like to update the House on the further assurances and clarifications we have received from the European Union on the Northern Ireland Protocol.

As a proud Unionist, I share the concerns of Members who want to ensure that in leaving the European Union we do not undermine the strength of our own union in the UK. That is why when the EU tried to insist on a Protocol that would carve out Northern Ireland from the rest of the UK’s customs territory, I said no. And I secured instead a UK-wide temporary customs arrangement – avoiding both a hard border on the island of Ireland and a customs border down the Irish Sea. I also negotiated substantial commitments in the Withdrawal Agreement and the Political Declaration to do everything possible to prevent the backstop ever being needed – and to ensure that if it were, it would be a temporary arrangement.

But listening to the debate before Christmas it was clear that we needed to go further. So I returned to Brussels to faithfully and firmly reflect the concerns of this House.

The conclusions of December’s Council went further in addressing our concerns.

They included reaffirming the EU’s determination to work speedily to establish by 31st December 2020 alternative arrangements so that the backstop will not need to be triggered. They underlined that if the backstop were nevertheless to be triggered it would indeed apply temporarily. They committed that in such an event, the EU would use their best endeavours to continue to negotiate and conclude as soon as possible a subsequent agreement that would replace the backstop. And they gave a new assurance that negotiations on the Future Relationship could start immediately after the UK’s withdrawal.

Since the Council and throughout the Christmas and New Year period I have spoken to a number of European leaders and there have been further discussions with the EU to seek further assurances alongside the Council conclusions. And today I have published the outcome of these further discussions with an exchange of letters between the UK Government and the Presidents of the European Commission and European Council.

The letter from President Tusk confirms what I said in the House before Christmas – namely that the assurances in the European Council conclusions have legal standing in the EU.

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