Britain, EU strike Brexit deal; trade arrangements up next

Great Britain and the European Union have come to a divorce agreement, the first step in separating Great Britain from the EU.

But many obstacles remain regarding trade agreements and the future relationship of Great Britain to the EU.

Reuters:

Moving to talks about trade and a Brexit transition was crucial for the future of May’s premiership which was thrown into doubt when she lost her party its majority in a snap election in June.

Pro-Brexit Conservative lawmakers rallied around her after the deal, a possible signal that the party - which has been split over EU membership for generations - was not preparing to ditch her immediately.

British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, who spearheaded the Brexit campaign, congratulated May, adding that Britain would now take back control of its laws, money and borders.

Cabinet minister Michael Gove, another prominent Brexit campaigner, called it a “significant personal political achievement”, and Suella Fernandes, head of an influential group of Conservatives praised the “pragmatic and flexible” approach.

The Commission’s recommendation that sufficient progress has been made will now go to an EU summit of leaders on Dec. 14-15.

“Prime Minister May has assured me that it has the backing of the UK government. On that basis, I believe we have now made the breakthrough we need. Today’s result is of course a compromise,” Juncker told the hastily-arranged news conference.

May said she expected a formal agreement to be approved at the summit.

“I also look forward to next week’s European Council meeting, where I hope and expect we will be able to get the endorsement of the 27 (member countries) to what is a hard-won agreement in all our interests,” May said.

The commission will now begin work on phase two talks, which cover a transitional exit period, trade and long-term relations with the bloc.

Draft guidelines showed the transition period would last around two years. During that time, Britain will remain part of the customs union and single market but will no longer take part in EU institutions or have a vote. It will still be subject to EU law.

Questions are being raised by some anti-EU activists about the shape a future arrangement with the EU might take. Some are saying that the negotiations will have to put more separation between the two sides if Brexit is to work as intended - give sovereignty back to Great Britain.

But the European economies are too intertwined for Great Britain to achieve a complete break. Instead, Great Britain will cooperate in a common market when it is in their interest - just as any sovereign nation would. Instead of being dictated to from Brussels (actually, Berlin), London will be free to pursue its own economic interests. 

Despite the fears of pro-EU activists, the break up is not tearing Europe apart or bankrupting Great Britain. There will be an adjustment period for both sides, but in the end, Great Britain isn't going anywhere, London will still be the financial services capital it's always been, and the nation will continue to trade with its friends on the continent.

Great Britain and the European Union have come to a divorce agreement, the first step in separating Great Britain from the EU.

But many obstacles remain regarding trade agreements and the future relationship of Great Britain to the EU.

Reuters:

Moving to talks about trade and a Brexit transition was crucial for the future of May’s premiership which was thrown into doubt when she lost her party its majority in a snap election in June.

Pro-Brexit Conservative lawmakers rallied around her after the deal, a possible signal that the party - which has been split over EU membership for generations - was not preparing to ditch her immediately.

British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, who spearheaded the Brexit campaign, congratulated May, adding that Britain would now take back control of its laws, money and borders.

Cabinet minister Michael Gove, another prominent Brexit campaigner, called it a “significant personal political achievement”, and Suella Fernandes, head of an influential group of Conservatives praised the “pragmatic and flexible” approach.

The Commission’s recommendation that sufficient progress has been made will now go to an EU summit of leaders on Dec. 14-15.

“Prime Minister May has assured me that it has the backing of the UK government. On that basis, I believe we have now made the breakthrough we need. Today’s result is of course a compromise,” Juncker told the hastily-arranged news conference.

May said she expected a formal agreement to be approved at the summit.

“I also look forward to next week’s European Council meeting, where I hope and expect we will be able to get the endorsement of the 27 (member countries) to what is a hard-won agreement in all our interests,” May said.

The commission will now begin work on phase two talks, which cover a transitional exit period, trade and long-term relations with the bloc.

Draft guidelines showed the transition period would last around two years. During that time, Britain will remain part of the customs union and single market but will no longer take part in EU institutions or have a vote. It will still be subject to EU law.

Questions are being raised by some anti-EU activists about the shape a future arrangement with the EU might take. Some are saying that the negotiations will have to put more separation between the two sides if Brexit is to work as intended - give sovereignty back to Great Britain.

But the European economies are too intertwined for Great Britain to achieve a complete break. Instead, Great Britain will cooperate in a common market when it is in their interest - just as any sovereign nation would. Instead of being dictated to from Brussels (actually, Berlin), London will be free to pursue its own economic interests. 

Despite the fears of pro-EU activists, the break up is not tearing Europe apart or bankrupting Great Britain. There will be an adjustment period for both sides, but in the end, Great Britain isn't going anywhere, London will still be the financial services capital it's always been, and the nation will continue to trade with its friends on the continent.