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EU Council opens Brexit talks, seeks fishing rights, sees role for EU law

THE European Council, made up of heads of government of member states, has authorised the opening of negotiations for a new relationship with Britain, and formally nominated the European Commission as EU negotiator

27 February 2020 - 19:00

THE European Council, made up of heads of government of member states, has authorised the opening of negotiations for a new relationship with Britain, and formally nominated the European Commission as EU negotiator. reports the official EU News.

The council has adopted a clear and strong mandate for negotiator Michel Barnier, confirming 'our readiness to offer an ambitious, wide-ranging and balanced partnership to the UK for the benefit of both sides'.



The mandate stresses that the future partnership should be underpinned by robust commitments to ensure a level playing field for open and fair competition, given the EU and the UK's geographic proximity and economic interdependence.



'The EU intends to establish a free trade agreement with the UK which ensures that zero tariffs and quotas apply to trade in goods. This agreement should provide for cooperation on customs and regulatory aspects. It should also include effective management and supervision, dispute settlement and enforcement arrangements,' said the report.



'On fisheries, the mandate outlines that the future partnership should uphold the existing reciprocal access to waters as well as stable quota shares. The agreement on fisheries should be established by 1 July 2020, to give time for determining fishing opportunities after the end of the transition period.



'The EU will seek to establish a comprehensive security partnership with the UK. The partnership should comprise law enforcement and judicial cooperation in criminal matters, as well as foreign policy, security and defence. The mandate foresees that the future partnership should be embedded in an overall governance framework covering all areas of cooperation,' said the report.


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