December 8th local time, the European Union and the United Kingdom issued a statement saying that the two sides reached “unanimous in principle” on the implementation of the Brexit agreement. Under this statement, the UK will withdraw the controversial provisions of the Internal Market Act.
The Deputy Chairman of the European Commission, Marosh Shevdjović, and Michael Gove, Minister of Cabinet Staff, issued a joint statement in his capacity as the co-chairmen of the EU-UK Joint Committee. The statement said that the two sides believe that the full implementation of the Brexit agreement is essential after the end of the Brexit transition period at the end of this year.
After weeks of intensive consultations, the United Kingdom and the European Union reached agreement in principle on border control, entry and exit inspection of animals, plants and derivatives, export declaration, pharmaceuticals, frozen meat products trade and other issues, and clarified the scope of application of state subsidies under the framework of the “Brexit” agreement.
The two sides also formed a “principles consensus” on the arrangements to be agreed upon by the end of the year, especially with regard to the Northern Ireland border inspection arrangements that are of public concern. The United Kingdom announced that it would repeal the controversial provisions of Articles 44, 45 and 47 of the Internal Markets Act, and would not introduce similar provisions in future tax bills.
According to European media analysis, the announcement of a principled agreement between Britain and Europe on the implementation of the “Brexit” agreement, and the United Kingdom’s commitment to repeal the disputed provisions of the Internal Markets Act is a positive development. However, the negotiations on future relations between Britain and Europe still face many challenges, and it is difficult to complete the negotiations within the year. European Commission President von der Leyen said on the 7th that the differences between the two sides are still obvious and it is impossible to reach an agreement.
British Prime Minister Johnson will go to Brussels on December 9 to hold talks with von der Leyen. Britain and the EU have obvious differences in three areas: fisheries issues, a fair playing field and dispute settlement mechanisms, and failed to complete the negotiations on future relations between Britain and Europe within the scheduled deadline.
Public opinion analysis shows that as the Brexit transition period approaches, the talks between British and European leaders on the 9th are crucial.