The UK voted to leave the European Union in a referendum held in June 2016, and since then, negotiations between the UK and the EU have been ongoing. Despite several deadlines and agreements, the negotiations have yet to result in a satisfactory resolution, leaving many uncertain about what the future holds for the UK and its relationship with the EU. In this article, we will explore the key issues surrounding the Brexit negotiations, including trade, borders, and sovereignty, and what the potential outcomes could mean for the UK and the EU.
One of the most significant issues in the Brexit negotiations has been trade. The UK was a member of the EU’s single market and customs union, which allowed for free movement of goods, services, people, and capital within the EU. However, leaving the EU means that the UK will no longer have access to the single market and customs union. This has created a significant challenge for the UK, as it needs to negotiate new trade agreements with the EU and other countries.
One of the key stumbling blocks in the negotiations has been the issue of tariffs. Tariffs are taxes on imported goods, and they can significantly affect the price of goods and services. The EU has insisted that the UK must follow EU regulations on trade and tariffs to ensure a level playing field. However, the UK has argued that it should have the right to set its own tariffs and regulations, which could lead to cheaper goods and services for consumers.
The United Kingdom’s decision to leave the European Union, commonly known as Brexit, has been a long and winding road. The process has been fraught with challenges, negotiations, and debates, as both the UK and the EU try to navigate the complexities of their separation. Since the Brexit vote in 2016, both sides have been engaged in negotiations to determine the terms of the UK’s departure and future relationship with the EU. However, despite several rounds of talks, the negotiations remain ongoing, with several sticking points yet to be resolved. This article provides an update on the current state of Brexit negotiations, the issues that have emerged, and the potential implications of the negotiations for the UK and the EU.
The Brexit negotiations formally began in June 2017, following the UK’s invocation of Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union, which triggered the process for the UK’s withdrawal from the EU. The negotiations were led by Michel Barnier, the European Commission’s chief Brexit negotiator, and David Davis, the UK’s Brexit Secretary, until his resignation in July 2018. The negotiations have been divided into three phases, with each phase dealing with a different set of issues.
Phase 1: Separation Issues
The first phase of negotiations, which began in June 2017 and concluded in December 2017, focused on separation issues. The key issues addressed in this phase included the UK’s financial settlement with the EU, citizens’ rights, and the Irish border. After several rounds of talks, the UK and the EU reached a tentative agreement on these issues, with the UK agreeing to pay a financial settlement of between £35-£39 billion, and both sides agreeing to protect the rights of EU citizens living in the UK and UK citizens living in the EU. However, the issue of the Irish border remained unresolved, with both sides agreeing to defer a decision until the second phase of negotiations.
The second phase of negotiations, which began in March 2018 and concluded in November 2018, focused on the future relationship between the UK and the EU. The key issues addressed in this phase included the UK’s access to the EU single market, the UK’s participation in EU agencies and programs, and the UK’s future relationship with the EU’s customs union. After several rounds of talks, the UK and the EU reached a tentative agreement on these issues, with the UK agreeing to a future relationship that was based on a free trade agreement and a customs arrangement that would avoid a hard border in Ireland. However, the agreement was not ratified by the UK Parliament, and negotiations were extended to a third phase.
Phase 3: Future Relationship (continued)
The third phase of negotiations, which began in March 2019 and is ongoing, has focused on the UK’s future relationship with the EU after the transition period, which ended on December 31, 2020. The key issues addressed in this phase include fisheries, the level playing field, governance, and the Irish border. Despite several rounds of talks, negotiations have stalled, with both sides unable to agree on several key issues.
Sticking Points in Brexit Negotiations
One of the main sticking points in Brexit negotiations has been the issue of fisheries. The UK has insisted on regaining control over its waters and setting its own fishing quotas, while the EU has demanded continued access