"We will have to rebuild a partnership with the United Kingdom, which will remain a great country that is a friend, ally and neighbour"
- Michel Barnier, Stockholm, 9 January 2020
The relationship between the European Union and the United Kingdom has changed now that the United Kingdom is a third country.
However, the parties aim to establish an ambitious future partnership, which reflects the political and geographical proximity and economic inter-dependence between the EU and the United Kingdom.
This future partnership will include provisions of direct interest to citizens and businesses in areas such as transport, industrial supply chains, agricultural products, fisheries, services, data protection, provisions for a level playing field, mobility of citizens, the fight against crime, money laundering and terrorism, foreign and security policy.
The Political Declaration
The Political Declaration accompanies the Withdrawal Agreement and sets the framework for the future relationship between the European Union and the United Kingdom.
It establishes the parameters of an ambitious, broad, deep and flexible partnership covering trade, economic cooperation and security.
The economic partnership will have a comprehensive and balanced Free Trade Agreement at its core and will cover areas of cooperation such as transport, energy, climate, environment and fisheries. The Declaration also states that the future relationship must ensure open and fair competition, encompassing robust commitments to ensure a level playing field.
With a view to Europe’s security and the safety of citizens, the future security partnership would cover both law enforcement and criminal justice, as well as foreign policy, security and defence and other areas of cooperation.
The Political Declaration also foresees that this partnership should be embedded in an overall governance framework, with appropriate mechanisms for enforcement and dispute settlement.
Negotiation rounds on the future partnership between the European Union and the United Kingdom
Get updates on the negotiation rounds, including location, dates, topics that will be discussed, and press material.
Guide to the negotiations
The negotiations on the future partnership between the European Union and the United Kingdom will formally open on Monday 2 March 2020.
The European Union and the United Kingdom have each set out their respective positions for the negotiations in detailed negotiating directives. The European Union’s negotiating directives were published on 25 February 2020, after adoption by the Council, while the United Kingdom’s negotiating mandate was published on 27 February 2020.
EU and UK negotiators have also agreed on terms of reference for the negotiations, which establish the structure of the talks, including indicative dates and agendas.
Preparing for a no-deal scenario
Should the United Kingdom leave the European Union after the transition period without a ratified agreement establishing a future partnership, this will have significant, disruptive consequences for relations between the United Kingdom and the European Union.
Preparing for a no-deal scenario is not just a matter for EU and national authorities, but also for businesses and individuals.