News & Insights

Weekly Update on Brexit Negotiations week commencing 31 August 2020

Parliament has returned from the summer recess and with only four months until the end of the transition period (31 December 2020), both sides have been in negotiating on their future relationship.

So far:

  • On 21 July, EU leaders agreed a €5 billion Brexit Adjustment Reserve in order to support Member States and sectors affected by Brexit, click here.
  • On 3 August, the Department for Transport launched consultation and proposed legislative amendments on measures to reduce traffic disruption in Kent to cross-Channel trade when the transition period ends. The measures will require lorries to follow designated routes and be in possession of a Kent-Access Permit when travelling to Dover and the Eurotunnel.  Consultation proposals can be found here.
  • On 7 August, Michael Gove and the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Brandon Lewis, announced a £650 million investment package  to help Northern Ireland businesses cope with the bureaucratic cost of moving goods across the Irish sea from Great Britain as a result of the Northern Ireland Protocol.
  • On 21 August, UK and EU negotiators concluded the seventh round of future relationship negotiations. Michael Barnier expressed his concerns by the lack of progress and stated an agreement at this stage looked “unlikely”. Whereas David Frost  believes that although “an agreement is possible, it will not be easy to achieve.”  According to Mr Frost, the talks between both sides are staling because of fishing and state aid, over which he accused the EU of seeking to maintain the status quo.

What is happening this week:

Tuesday 1 September

MP will debate the second reading of the Fisheries Bill , after it completed all stages in the House of Lords.

Wednesday 2 September

In the House of Lords, Peers will have an opportunity to question Ministers about future UK-EU trade in respect of non-financial services.

Thursday 3 September

International Trade Secretary, Liz Truss, and her team will be scrutinised by MPs.

In addition, the Welsh Affairs Committee will resume its inquiry into the implications of the UK-EU trade negotiations for Wales.

Finally, over in the Northern Ireland Assembly, the Committee for Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs will hear from Northern Ireland business leaders in relation to their preparations for the end of the transition period.

Looking ahead

  • 7-11 September:  negotiating round on the future relationship (London)
  • 28-2 September/October:  negotiating round on the future relationship (Brussels)
  • 15-16 October: European Council Meeting
  • 31 December: Date in law for the end of the transition period.