By letter of 20 March 2019 and 5 April 2019, the UK has submitted a request for an extension of the period to leave the EU, with a view to finalising the ratification of the Withdrawal Agreement (WA). Last night, 10 April 2019, the European Council (the EU Institution representing the EU Member States) decided to grant such extension until Halloween this year at the latest. The UK government has agreed to the extension of the period and to the EU leaders decision. The UK Parliament will express its views today but it is widely believed that the UK Parliament will agree to this.
- No Brexit will occur this Friday.
- Brexit may occur between now and 1 November 2019.
- If it does, it will be on the first of month following approval & ratification of the WA or
- on 1 June if the UK does not hold European elections towards the end of May.
The details are:
1. The date of exit
The extension should last as long as necessary and, in any event, no longer than 31 October 2019.
The Withdrawal Agreement may enter into force on an earlier date, should the Parties complete their respective ratification procedures before 31 October 2019.
If so, the withdrawal would take place on the first day of the month following the completion of the ratification procedures or on 1 November 2019, whichever is the earliest.
2. The Withdrawal Agreement
This extension excludes any re-opening of the Withdrawal Agreement.
Any unilateral commitment, statement or other act by the United Kingdom should be compatible with the letter and the spirit of the Withdrawal Agreement, and must not hamper its implementation.
The extension cannot be used to start negotiations on the future relationship.
3. Law, rights & obligations
Until the new withdrawal date, the UK remains an EU member with full rights and obligations.
The ongoing mandates of members of institutions, bodies, offices and agencies of the Union nominated, appointed or elected in relation to the UK’s membership of the Union will end as soon as the Treaties cease to apply to the United Kingdom, i.e. on the date of the withdrawal.
The Union law continues to apply across all areas as today. New legislation passed will not be enacted.
4. European Elections
If the United Kingdom is still a Member State on 23-26 May 2019, and if it has not ratified the Withdrawal Agreement by 22 May 2019, it will be under an obligation to hold the elections to the European Parliament.
In the event that those elections do not take place in the United Kingdom, the extension should cease on 31 May 2019.
5. Behaviour of the departing Member State in EU affairs
The UK has to act in a constructive and responsible manner throughout the extension period in accordance with the duty of sincere cooperation
The UK has to fulfil this commitment and Treaty obligation in a manner that reflects its situation as a withdrawing Member State.
The UK shall facilitate the achievement of the Union’s tasks and shall refrain from any measure which could jeopardise the attainment of the Union’s objectives, in particular when participating in the decision-making processes of the Union.