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What is Brexit?

What is the Withdrawal Agreement?

The Withdrawal Agreement establishes the conditions for the UK's withdrawal from the EU and the European Atomic Energy Community (EURATOM). Its text was originally agreed by the negotiators on 14 November 2018 and endorsed on 25 November 2018 by the European Council (Article 50). Following a change of government in the UK, the negotiators of the parties revised the Withdrawal Agreement, particularly with respect to the Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland. The negotiators reached a new agreement on 17 October 2019. On the same day, the European Council (Article 50) agreed to the new text. At present, it is pending signature and ratification by both the UK and the EU. This is expected to occur before 31 January 2020.

What is the transitional period?

The transition period is a period provided for in the Withdrawal Agreement from 30 March 2019, the date on which the United Kingdom becomes a third country, and 31 December 2020, with the possibility of a one- or two-year extension.

During this period, the provisions of the Withdrawal Agreement will apply aimed at facilitating an orderly withdrawal and offering sufficient time to negotiate and conclude the agreement that will govern any future relations between the two parties.

The Withdrawal Agreement provide for the continued application during this period by the United Kingdom of practically the whole EU acquis despite no longer forming part of the decision-making process of the European Union.