Recommendation for a Council Decision authorising the opening of negotiations for a new partnership with the United Kingdom

Author (Corporate)
Series Details COM (2020) 35
Publication Date 03/02/2020
Content Type

Summary:

Recommendation for a Council Decision on opening negotiations for a new partnership between the European Union (EU) and the United Kingdom (UK), published by the European Commission on 3 February 2020.

Further information:

The United Kingdom withdrew from the European Union and from the European Atomic Energy Community (Euratom) on 1 February 2020. A Withdrawal Agreement entered into force and provides for a transition period until the year of the year (unless a Joint Committee adopts a decision extending that transition period). The European Council stated in March 2018 that it was in the EU's interest to keep as close as possible a partnership with the United Kingdom in the future. A set of guidelines - reflected in a Political Declaration accompanying the Withdrawal Agreement - highlight that such partnership should cover trade and economic cooperation as well as other areas, such as security, defence and foreign policy.

The political declaration that accompanied the Withdrawal Agreement sets out the framework for the future relationship between the European Union and the United Kingdom. In its conclusions from December 2019, the European Council reconfirmed its desire to establish as close as possible a future relationship with the United Kingdom in line with the Political Declaration and respecting the previously agreed European Council’s guidelines, as well as statements and declarations, notably those of November 2018. The European Council reiterated in particular that the future relationship with the United Kingdom would have to be based on a balance of rights and obligations and ensure a level playing field.

The new partnership envisaged in this recommendation reflects the conclusions and guidelines of the European Council and builds on the Political Declaration. This recommendation invites the Council of the European Union to authorise the opening of negotiations, to nominate the European Commission as the negotiator, to address directives to the negotiator and to designate a special committee in consultation with which the negotiations must be conducted.

The European Parliament held a discussion on the proposed mandate on 11 February and adopted a Resolution with its views relating to it on the following day. The Council of the European Union adopted the Decision on 25 February, including the negotiating directives.

The draft legal agreement on 'a new partnership with the United Kingdom' was published by the European Commission on 18 March 2020. It translates into legal text the negotiating directives adopted by the Council.

Source Link https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?uri=COM:2020:35:FIN
Related Link(s)
Commentary and Analysis
BBC News, 21/01/2020: Brexit: What is a level playing field? https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/51180282

News
Politico, 03/02/2020: Michel Barnier lays out EU’s Brexit trade talks mandate https://www.politico.eu/article/michel-barnier-lays-out-eus-brexit-trade-talks-mandate/
BBC News, 03/02/2020: Michel Barnier: Work should start now on NI agreements https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-northern-ireland-51358392
The Guardian, 03/02/2020: Michel Barnier: Johnson agreed last year to stick to EU rules https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2020/feb/03/michel-barnier-boris-johnson-eu-rules-brexit
Euronews, 11/02/2020: UK should be ‘more ambitious’ over post-Brexit EU trade, Von der Leyen tells MEPs https://www.euronews.com/2020/02/11/uk-should-be-more-ambitious-over-post-brexit-eu-trade-von-der-leyen-tells-meps
The Guardian, 11/02/2020: Ursula von der Leyen mocks Boris Johnson's stance on EU trade deal https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2020/feb/11/ursula-von-der-leyen-mocks-boris-johnsons-stance-on-eu-trade-deal
EurActiv, 12/02/2020: MEPs to greenlight UK trade talks, von der Leyen baffled by ‘Australia’ comparison https://www.euractiv.com/section/uk-europe/news/meps-to-greenlight-uk-trade-talks-von-der-leyen-baffled-by-australia-comparison/
BBC News, 12/02/2020: Brexit: EU Parliament makes tough demands for talks https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-51474001
City AM, 12/02/2020: European Parliament sets up more Brexit drama as it backs 'dynamic alignment' https://www.cityam.com/european-parliament-sets-stage-for-more-brexit-drama-as-it-backs-dynamic-alignment/
The Guardian, 12/02/2020: UK alignment on EU standards price to pay for trade deal, say MEPs https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2020/feb/12/uk-alignment-on-eu-standards-price-to-pay-for-trade-deal-say-meps
Politico, 24/02/2020: EU ambassadors green-light next Brexit mandate https://www.politico.eu/article/eu-ambassadors-green-light-next-brexit-mandate/
BBC News, 25/02/2020: Brexit: EU ministers agree UK trade talks mandate https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-51623444
The Guardian, 25/02/2020: Barnier pours scorn on Johnson's spokesman ahead of trade talks https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2020/feb/25/keep-chlorinated-chicken-ban-to-win-trade-deal-eu-tells-uk
EurActiv, 25/02/2020: Brexit deal will be ‘difficult’, Barnier says as ministers agree mandate https://www.euractiv.com/section/uk-europe/news/brexit-deal-will-be-difficult-barnier-says-as-ministers-agree-mandate/
The Guardian, 13/03/2020: Brexit: EU's demands in negotiations with UK revealed in draft treaty https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2020/mar/13/brexit-eu-demands-uk-negotiations-draft-treaty
EurActiv, 13/03/2020: Barnier shows controversial draft UK deal to EU members https://www.euractiv.com/section/uk-europe/news/barnier-shows-controversial-draft-uk-deal-to-eu-members/
BBC News, 13/03/2020: Brexit: EU drafts trade deal ahead of talks with UK https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-51871155
Reuters, 13/03/2020: EU's draft new deal envisages close ties with Brexit Britain https://uk.reuters.com/article/idUKKBN2101HW

Official
European Parliament: Legislative Observatory: Procedure File on EU-UK future relationship debate https://oeil.secure.europarl.europa.eu/oeil/popups/ficheprocedure.do?lang=en&reference=2020/2557(RSP)
European Commission: Press Release, 03/02/2020: Future EU-UK Partnership: European Commission takes first step to launch negotiations with the United Kingdom https://ec.europa.eu/commission/presscorner/detail/en/ip_20_176
European Commission: Questions & Answers on the draft negotiating directives for a new partnership with the United Kingdom (3 February 2020) https://ec.europa.eu/commission/presscorner/detail/en/qanda_20_179
European Commission: Statement by Michel Barnier at the presentation of the Commission's proposal for a Council recommendation on directives for the negotiation of a new partnership with the UK (3 February 2020) https://ec.europa.eu/commission/presscorner/detail/en/speech_20_185
European Commission: Doorstep by President von der Leyen following her meeting with a group of British European Commission staff including remarks on the draft negotiating directives (3 February 2020) https://ec.europa.eu/commission/presscorner/detail/en/speech_20_188
European Commission: Speech by President von der Leyen in the Plenary of the European Parliament at the debate on the Commission's proposal for a mandate for the negotiation of a new partnership with the United Kingdom (11 February 2020) https://ec.europa.eu/commission/presscorner/detail/en/speech_20_230
European Parliament: Press Release, 12/02/2020: EU-UK future relations: 'level playing field' crucial to ensure fair competition https://www.europarl.europa.eu/news/en/press-room/20200206IPR72011/
Council of the European Union: Press Release, 25/02/2020: EU-UK relations: Council gives go-ahead for talks to start and adopts negotiating directives https://www.consilium.europa.eu/en/press/press-releases/2020/02/25/eu-uk-relations-council-gives-go-ahead-for-talks-to-start-and-adopts-negotiating-directives/
European Commission: Press Release, 25/02/2020: Future EU-UK Partnership: European Commission receives mandate to begin negotiations with the UK https://ec.europa.eu/commission/presscorner/detail/en/ip_20_324
European Commission: Future EU-UK Partnership: Question and Answers on the negotiating directives (25 February 2020) https://ec.europa.eu/commission/presscorner/detail/en/qanda_20_326
European Commission: Press Release, 18/03/2020: Future EU-UK Partnership: European Commission publishes draft legal text https://ec.europa.eu/commission/presscorner/detail/en/ip_20_447
European Commission: Draft text of the Agreement on the New Partnership with the United Kingdom (March 2020) https://ec.europa.eu/info/sites/info/files/200318-draft-agreement-gen.pdf
European Parliament: Press Release, 19/03/2020: Future EU-UK relations: EU is offering ‘cooperation of an unprecedented nature’ https://www.europarl.europa.eu/news/en/press-room/20200319IPR75307/

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