Europe wants Brexit transition to end by December 2020

ANI | Updated: Dec 20, 2017 21:25 IST

London [United Kingdom], December 20 (ANI): The European Commission (EC) on Wednesday said that the United Kingdom's transition out of the European Union should be completed by 31 December, 2020, British media reported on Wednesday.

Also, it was decided that the treaty on the U.K.'s exit from the EU bloc should be finalized by October 2018.

The deadline coincides with the end of the EU's 7-year budget period and has long been expected as the end date of the transition.

The announcement comes after British Prime Minister Theresa May told the Parliament: "We are well on our way to delivering a smooth and orderly Brexit."

The EC has set out some details of how the negotiations will proceed. The UK will continue to participate in the Customs Union and the Single Market. The Union acquis (European Law) will continue to apply in full to and in the U.K. as it is a Member State. Any changes made to the acquis during this time should automatically apply to the U.K.

All existing Union regulatory, budgetary, supervisory, judiciary and enforcement instruments and structures will apply, including the competence of the Court of Justice of the EU.

The U.K. will officially be a third country from March 30, 2019. As a result, it will no longer be represented in Union institutions, agencies, bodies and offices. The transition period needs to be clearly defined and precisely limited in time.

The next step, in line with the European Council's guidelines of December 15, 2017, will see the the General Affairs Council adopt these additional negotiating directives on transitional arrangements in January 2018.

The EU's chief negotiator, Michel Barnier, has said that the U.K. will retain the benefits and obligations of EU membership, until the transition period ends.

At the same time, Britain will enjoy all benefits and obligations of a single market during the transition period after Brexit, the bloc's representative has announced.

In a referendum on June 23 last year, 51.9 percent of the UK electorate (overall turnout was 72.2 percent) voted to leave the EU.

On March 29, 2017, the British government invoked Article 50 of the Treaty on the European Union, beginning the process of U.K.'s exit from the European bloc. (ANI)