Article 51 Withdrawal Agreement: What it Means for the UK`s Exit from the EU
The United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union in 2016, beginning a long and complex process of negotiations between the two sides. In November 2018, an agreement was reached, known as the Withdrawal Agreement, which outlined the terms of the UK`s departure from the EU. One of the key articles in this agreement is Article 51, which has implications for a number of areas including trade, security, and citizens` rights.
What is Article 51?
Article 51 of the Withdrawal Agreement establishes a transition period that will last from the date of the UK`s official exit from the EU, on March 29th 2019, until December 31st 2020. During this time, the UK will continue to follow EU rules and regulations, while no longer being a member state of the union. This transition period is designed to allow time for the UK and EU to negotiate a new relationship, covering areas such as trade, security, and citizens` rights. The transition period can be extended once for up to two years, if requested by the UK and agreed by the EU.
What are the implications of Article 51?
The transition period established by Article 51 will have significant implications for both the UK and the EU. In terms of trade, the UK will continue to have access to the EU`s single market and customs union during the transition period, but will no longer have any say in shaping EU policies and regulations. This may lead to some difficulties for UK businesses, particularly those that rely heavily on trade with the EU. It also means the UK will not be able to sign trade deals with other countries during the transition period.
In terms of security, the UK will still be able to access European security databases and agencies during the transition period, but again will no longer have a say in how these are operated. This could impact on the UK`s ability to combat crime and terrorism, although there are plans in place to continue cooperation in these areas.
Citizens` rights are also a key area covered by Article 51. During the transition period, EU citizens living in the UK and UK citizens living in the EU will continue to have the same rights they currently have, such as the right to work and access to healthcare. This is seen as a crucial issue, as it affects the lives of millions of people.
Article 51 of the Withdrawal Agreement is an important part of the UK`s exit from the EU. It establishes a transition period during which the UK will continue to follow EU rules and regulations, while no longer being a member state of the union. This period will have significant implications for trade, security, and citizens` rights, and will be closely watched by businesses and individuals on both sides of the Channel. As negotiations continue, it is likely that Article 51 will remain a focal point for discussions, and its full implications may not be known until some time after the UK`s official exit from the EU.