Today, the Council adopted by written procedure the following conclusions on EU-UK relations.
“The Council of the European Union
- Takes note of the United Kingdom’s government decision not to request and its intention to refuse an extension of the transition period foreseen in the Withdrawal Agreement. This means that the transition period will end on 31 December 2020.
- Recalls that, in its conclusions of 13 December 2019, the European Council (art. 50) restated the Union’s determination to have as close as possible a partnership with the United Kingdom in the future, in line with the Political Declaration establishing the key parameters of the envisaged partnership between the Union and the United Kingdom.
- Reconfirms its full support to the Union negotiator and reiterates its readiness to reach an ambitious agreement in accordance with the negotiating directives of 25 February 2020 while respecting the previously agreed European Council’s guidelines, as well as statements and declarations, notably those of 25 November 2018.
- Takes note of the limited progress achieved in the negotiations until now.
- Welcomes the plans agreed by the Chief Negotiators to intensify the negotiation process and to create the most conducive conditions for reaching an agreement before the end of 2020.
- Recalls that the Council shall be fully informed of any development of the negotiations, which shall be conducted by the Commission in continuous coordination and permanent dialogue with the Council, and following its guidance.
- Will continue to closely follow the effective implementation of the Withdrawal Agreement, notably its Part on Citizens’ rights, and of its three Protocols. In particular as regards the Protocol on Ireland and Northern Ireland, it expects the UK to come forward with meaningful and concrete steps in this respect.
- Calls upon Member States, Union institutions and all stakeholders to step up their work on preparedness and readiness at all levels and for all outcomes, including that of no agreement.”