6.Am 29 March 2017, the then Prime Minister, Prime Minister Hon Theresa May, informed the European Council of the UK`s intention to withdraw from the European Union in accordance with Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union (TEU). Article 50 stipulates that the European Union should, within two years, “negotiating and concluding an agreement with [the withdrawn state] setting out the terms of its withdrawal within the framework of its future relations with the Union”6 On 28 February 2018, the European Commission (presented by Michel Barnier, chief negotiator) published the draft agreement for the withdrawal of the United Kingdom from Great Britain and Northern Ireland from the European Union and the European Atomic Energy Community. This 118-page document can be downloaded from the link below. The most important elements of the draft agreement are: The agreement also provides for a transitional period that will last until 31 December 2020 and can be extended by mutual agreement. During the transitional period, EU legislation will continue to apply to the UK (including participation in the European Economic Area, the internal market and the customs union) and the UK will continue to contribute to the EU budget, but the UK will not be represented in EU decision-making bodies. The transition period will give businesses time to adapt to the new situation and the new era, so that the British and European governments can negotiate a new trade agreement between the EU and the UK.   The revised withdrawal agreement and political declaration were reviewed and approved at the European Council on 17 October 2019. The agreement defines the goods, services and processes associated with them. Any provision of goods or services legally put on the market before leaving the EU may be made available to consumers in the UK or in the EU Member States (Article 40-41). On 17 October 2019, at the European Council, the EU and the United Kingdom agreed on the text of the revised withdrawal agreement and the accompanying political declaration. These documents can be downloaded from the Official Journal of the European Union at ec.europa.eu/commission/publications/withdrawal-agreement-and-political-declaration-official-journal-european-union-12-november-2019_enA Summary of the Withdrawal Agreement, The House of the Common Library, published by the British House of Commons Library, is available here: researchbriefings.parliament.uk/ResearchBriefing/Summary/CBP-8713The Institute for Government presents its statement in a useful table format: www.instituteforgovernment.org.uk/explainers/brexit-deal-withdrawal-agreementSteve Peers offers four articles on his blog on EU legal analysis to analyse the elements of the withdrawal agreement. The first article, an overview, can be viewed via the following link.
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