1. Under the Draft Agreement we are rule takers not rule makers.
  • The future relationship is a direct replica of the EU and everything the British people voted against. “Having regard to the Union and to the United Kingdom’s common objective of a close future relationship, which will establish ambitious customs arrangements that build on the single customs territory provided for in this Protocol, in full respect of their respective legal orders.”[1]
  • The UK will have to abide by the EU’s Common Commercial Policy – ending any free trade deals. “The United Kingdom shall harmonise the commercial policy applicable to its customs territory with the common commercial policy of the Union.”[2]

 

  1. Under the Draft Agreement we do not control our laws.
  • If we fail to implement a new EU law during the transition period in the withdrawal agreement then the EU is entitled to punish the UK. “The Union shall be entitled, after giving notice to the United Kingdom, to take appropriate remedial measures: (a)  in accordance with Article 13(3); or (b)  where the Union considers that the United Kingdom has failed to comply with its obligations under Article 7 and Articles 9 to 12 and the Union has commenced consultation in the Joint Committee in accordance with Article 169 of the Withdrawal Agreement, provided that the Union considers that the United Kingdom’s failure to comply threatens to undermine the equal conditions of competition between the parts of the single customs territory.”[3]
  • The transition period can be extended indefinitely. “Notwithstanding Article 126, the Joint Committee may, before 1 July 2020, adopt a single decision extending the transition period up to [31 December 20XX].”[4]
  • The EU can haul the United Kingdom before the European Court of Justice up to 2024. “If the European Commission considers that the United Kingdom has failed to fulfil an obligation under the Treaties or under Part Four of this Agreement before the end of the transition period, the European Commission may, within 4 years after the end of the transition period, bring the matter before the Court of Justice of the European Union,”[5]
  • The European Court of Justice will be the highest court in the UK until at least 2020, breaking a Conservative Party manifesto pledge. “The Court of Justice of the European Union shall continue to have jurisdiction to give preliminary rulings on requests from courts and tribunals of the United Kingdom made before the end of the transition period.”[6]
  • All rulings of the European Court of Justice shall be binding on the United Kingdom. “Judgments and orders of the Court of Justice of the European Union handed down before the end of the transition period, as well as such judgments and orders handed down after the end of the transition period in proceedings referred to in Articles 86 and 87, shall have binding force in their entirety on and in the United Kingdom.”[7]

 

  1. Under the Draft Agreement we do not have control of our money.
  • The UK is still obliged to pay money to the EU, under EU rules, for years to come. “For the years 2019 and 2020, in accordance with Part Four, the United Kingdom shall contribute to and participate in the implementation of the Union budgets.”[8] “The applicable Union law concerning the Union’s own resources relating to financial years until 2020 shall continue to apply to the United Kingdom after 31 December 2020, including where the own resources concerned are to be made available, corrected or subject to adjustments after that date.”[9]
  • The EU will send the UK a wish list of items and bills even after we leave the EU. “The Union shall calculate the amount of commitments referred to in paragraph 1 on 31 December 2020. It shall communicate that amount to the United Kingdom by 31 March 2021, adding a list with the reference key of each commitment, the associated budget lines, and the amount for each associated budget line.”[10]
  • The UK may – ‘exceptionally’ and by invite only – attend EU meetings that decide the UK’s financial contributions. “By way of derogation from Article 7 of this Agreement, the representatives or experts of the United Kingdom, or experts designated by the United Kingdom may, upon invitation, exceptionally attend, without voting rights, the meetings of any committee established by the applicable Union law referred to in paragraphs 1 and 2 of this Article, such as the meetings of the Advisory Committee on Own Resources established by Article 7 of Regulation (EU, Euratom) No 608/2014 or the GNI Committee established by Article 4 of Regulation (EU, Euratom) No 1287/2003, to the extent that the work of such committees concerns the financial years until 2020.” [11]
  • The EU will only terminate joint programs and obligations from the UK if they do not benefit the UK, or give it a competitive edge. “On a proposal from the Committee on the financial provisions referred to in point (f) of Article 165(1), the Joint Committee may adopt, in conformity with the rules established in Article 166, technical measures to facilitate the closure of the programmes and activities referred to in paragraph 1 of this Article or to exempt the United Kingdom from obligations to take actions, during or after the closure of those programmes and activities, which are not relevant for a former Member State, provided that such technical measures respect the principle of sound financial management and do not result in an advantage in favour of the United Kingdom or the United Kingdom beneficiaries compared to Member States or third countries participating in the same programmes and activities financed by the Union budget.[12]

 

  1. Under the Draft Agreement we will not have control of our borders.
  • During the transition period, our borders are still controlled by the same EU migration laws – ensuring freedom of movement. “The conduct of Union citizens or United Kingdom nationals, their family members, and other persons, who exercise rights under this Title, where that conduct occurred before the end of the transition period, shall be considered in accordance with Chapter VI of Directive 2004/38/EC [The Citizens’ Rights Directive 2004/38/EC which defines the right of free movement for citizens of the EU.”[13]
  • EU citizens will never lose their right to live in the UK– no matter how much time they spend abroad– as long as they obtain their residency within the transition period. “Once acquired, the right of permanent residence shall be lost only through absence from the host State for a period exceeding 5 consecutive years.” [14]But, “The right of permanent residence acquired under Directive 2004/38/EC before the end of the transition period shall not be treated as lost through absence from the host State for a period specified in Article 15(3).”[15]

 

  1. Under the Draft Agreement the UK cannot freely agree trade deals, even with our number one trading partner the US.
  • The UK will have to abide by the EU’s Common Commercial Policy – ending any free trade deals. “The United Kingdom shall harmonise the commercial policy applicable to its customs territory with the common commercial policy of the Union,”[16]
  • The UK only has the right to be “consulted” on fishing in its territorial waters, which will deter fishing industry inclusion in trade deals. “the Union shall offer the opportunity to the United Kingdom to provide comments on the Annual Communication from the European Commission on fishing opportunities, the scientific advice from the relevant scientific bodies and the proposals from the European Commission for fishing opportunities for any period falling within the transition period.”[17]

 

 

[1] EU Draft Agreement, Protocol on Ireland/ Northern Ireland, p.303

[2] EU Draft Agreement, Annex 2, Article 4, p.338

[3] EU Draft Agreement, Annex 4, Part One, Article 14, p.371.

[4] EU Draft Agreement, Title 13, Part Four, Article 132, p.207

[5] EU Draft Agreement, Article 87, Section 1, p.146

[6] EU Draft Agreement, Chapter 1, Article 86, p.145

[7] EU Draft Agreement, Article 89, p.147

[8] EU Draft Agreement, Title 13, Article 136, p.213

[9] EU Draft Agreement, Title 13, Article 136, p.213

[10] EU Draft Agreement, Title 13, Article 140, P.224

[11] EU Draft Agreement, Title 13, Article 138, p.221

[12] EU Draft Agreement, Title 13, Article 138, p.222

[13] EU Draft Agreement, Title II, Article 20, p.40

[14] EU Draft Agreement, Title 1, Article 15, p.28

[15] EU Draft Agreement, Title 1, Article 11, p.23

[16] EU Draft Agreement, Annex 2, Article 4, p.338

[17] EU Draft Agreement, Article 130, p.206


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