The EU has published a draft text for the treaty relating to the UK’s withdrawal from the EU.
The document, titled the European Commission Draft Withdrawal Agreement on the withdrawal of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland from the European Union and the European Atomic Energy Community, provides a comprehensive draft text covering the terms of the UK’s departure from the EU. However, as stated by Michel Barnier following its publication, the treaty can only be finalised once talks between the EU and the UK on the terms of departure have been agreed. He also cautioned that agreement on a transition period is not inevitable given significant differences which currently exist between the EU and UK positions. Negotiations are due to resume at the beginning of March.
The document largely reflects what was agreed by the parties in December, but seeks to provide additional detail. The text, which runs to some 119 pages, contains 168 Articles and protocols relating to UK bases in Cyprus and the Irish border – all of which will likely be subject to much debate and negotiation.
We will be providing more detailed commentary on different aspects of the draft treaty in due course.