BLOG – Brexit Negotiations

Could the European Parliament Kill Off the Brexit Deal?

Francis Jacobs (formerly European Parliament staff) The role of the European Parliament  in the adoption of the EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement Agreement on a Trade and Cooperation Agreement (TCA) between the EU and the UK may have been reached by the two negotiating teams on 24 December 2020, but it will only be final if and when…
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Brexit’s Graceless Diplomacy

Feargal Cochrane (University of Kent) Divorce is rarely a pleasant experience. Even with the best will in the world, with partners agreeing to an amicable separation for the sake of the children, the specific arrangements and interpretation of what ‘being amicable’ amounts to, can quickly lead to mistrust, accusations of bad faith and bitter recrimination.…
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Extending Provisional Application of the TCA – A Matter of Democracy

Merijn Chamon (Maastricht University) On 23 February the EU and UK informally agreed to extend the period of provisional application of the EU–UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement until 30 April 2021. In accordance with Article FINPROV.11(2) of the TCA, the formal decision to extend will be taken by the Partnership Council and this, evidently, before…
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The Brexit Agreement and UK-EU Extradition

Noreen O’Meara (University of Surrey) The provisional text of the new EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement (‘the Agreement’ / ‘TCA’) sets the scene for important shifts in the security relations between the UK and EU. Extradition is one of several key aspects of police and judicial co-operation addressed in the Agreement. It was always clear that…
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Brexit, EU Criminal Law and the Common Law Deficit

Liz Heffernan (Trinity College Dublin) The EU-UK Agreement on Trade and Cooperation marks a milestone in the laborious and controversial process of the UK exiting the EU. While the bulk of its provisions are devoted to trade, the agreement encompasses other important fields including law enforcement and judicial cooperation in criminal matters. In recent decades…
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After Brexit: UK Citizens Living in Europe

Orsolya Farkas (Free University of Bolzano/Bozen) It has been clear since the very beginning that Brexit would fundamentally change the legal status of the approx. 1.2 million UK citizens living in Europe, and that those who are planning to move will find themselves in a new situation. But it was less expected that uncertainty –…
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Immigration, Free Movement and Brexit

Jonathan Portes (Kings College London and UK in a Changing Europe) Immigration was a major factor – perhaps the major factor – in the Brexit vote. Over the past two decades, migration from the EU has boosted UK growth, helped address skill and labour shortages, and benefited the public finances. It also led to rapid…
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Brexit ‘not done’ for Data Protection

Karen Mc Cullagh (University of East Anglia) The current Prime Minister of the UK, Mr Boris Johnson, was infamously elected to “get Brexit done,” and he claimed to have achieved this goal when the European Union and United Kingdom agreed upon the terms of the historic EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement (the “Trade Agreement”) on 24th…
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New Year, But the Brexit Story is Not Over

Federico Fabbrini (DCU Brexit Institute) Since 1st January 2021, the United Kingdom (UK) has exited the European Union (EU)’s internal market and customs union, as well as its area of freedom security and justice, severing the last substantive bridge connecting it to continental Europe. While in fact the UK had formally left the EU already on…
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Last-Minute Legislating as the Brexit Deal is Concluded

Joelle Grogan (Middlesex University London) On Christmas Eve 2020, only seven days before the end of the transition period and a ‘No Deal’ Brexit on 31 December 2020, negotiators concluded a Draft Trade and Cooperation Agreement between the UK and the EU. On any scale of negotiation for an international agreement, particularly one of this…
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Why the EU Avoided the Cliff Edge Brexit that Many had Feared

Simon Sweeney (University of York) Prime Minister Boris Johnson achieved his aim: ‘Canada Plus’, no tariffs or quotas on merchandise trade. The Plus is continued cooperation in security, transport, and energy. The UK also stays in Euratom, the EU’s atomic energy community. These are substantial achievements for London, avoiding immediate and critical damage from no…
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Christmas’ Eve Brexit Deal

Federico Fabbrini (DCU Brexit Institute) On 24 December 2020, Christmas’ Eve, the European Union (EU) and the United Kingdom (UK) have reached a deal on the framework of their future relations. The draft EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement brings to a close 10 months of intense negotiations – which started right after the withdrawal of…
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Johnson’s ‘Oven Ready’ Brexit is a Slow Burner

Feargal Cochrane (University of Kent) Boris Johnson won last year’s general election, in part, because of his claim to have an ‘oven ready’ Brexit. ‘We’ve just got to put it in at gas mark four, give it 20 minutes and Bob’s your uncle. …We have a deal with the EU that is ready to go,…
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The Interim UK-Canada FTA: Good News for British Exporters

David Collins (City, University of London) The UK struck a new free trade agreement (FTA) with Canada over the weekend, ahead of the 31 December Brexit deadline after which the EU-Canada Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) would cease to apply to the UK, leaving it to trade with Canada under the less generous terms…
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Brexit and Data Protection: an Illusory Opportunity for Divergence?

Karen Mc Cullagh (University of East Anglia) The UK economy is predominantly service based (in 2019, the service industries accounted for 80% of total UK economic output (Gross Value Added)), and most of its trade in services is with the EU and the US.  As many of these service industries, including digital technology businesses, generate…
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Taking Stock of What a Joe Biden Presidency Means for Brexit Negotiations

Pieter Cleppe (PRA) The question of how the prospect of a Joe Biden Presidency will affect EU-UK negotiations has raised a lot of attention. Opinions seem to differ. Former Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage writes that “Joe Biden is no friend of Britain”, arguing that therefore, the UK, “is now far more likely to do…
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After the US Elections: Brexit Reality Check

Ardi Kolah (Queen’s University Belfast) As Michel Barnier, the EU’s lead negotiator, arrived by Eurostar from Brussels to continue a ‘more intensive’ round of talks with the UK Government on the shape of a potential Brexit trade deal[1], it’s time for both sides take a Brexit Reality Check. US President-Elect Joe Biden’s narrow victory over…
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Brexit and UK Devolution

Daniel Wincott (University of Cardiff) Brexit has exposed the underdeveloped and fragile aspects of devolution in the UK. Devolved governments’ relationships with London are strained. The arrangements that seemed to be in place to manage those relationships are buckling.  If the sheer fact of leaving the EU made internal UK changes to devolution unavoidable, the…
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The Making of the UK Internal Market: a Clumsy Imitation of EU Law?

Isabella Mancini (City, University of London) Despite the rhetoric to diverge from the EU, the UK Government recently proposed a controversial piece of legislation for the functioning of a UK “Internal Market”, parroting with this language what has typically been an EU construction. Brexit means that the UK will have to manage its internal trade,…
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The End of the post-Brexit Transition and the Global Pharmaceutical Sector

John S. F. Wright (University of Technology Sydney) and Dimitrios Doukas (University of Manchester) The UK’s withdrawal from the European Union raises serious, and potentially crippling, governance and legal challenges in the context of the global pharmaceutical sector (Wright and Doukas 2020).  Specifically, the UK risks a loss of influence over the licensing and surveillance of…
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Post-Brexit UK Fund Regulation: Equivalence, Divergence or Convergence?

Elizabeth Howell (London School of Economics) The UK’s collective investment scheme (‘CIS’) sector is a key aspect of UK financial services. With the UK’s departure from the EU, it has also become a politically salient topic, with various Member States competing to lure business to their financial centres in light of Brexit. Brexit prompts hard…
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Rishi Sunak: Brexit Britain’s Future?

Joshua Hockley-Still (University of Exeter) As Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s deadline to reach a Brexit deal passed without agreement, Britain is now less than 3 months away from leaving the European Union without a trade deal (commonly known as ‘no deal’.) Johnson’s position is clear; being considered the man to get Brexit done took him…
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Deal or No Deal? EU-UK Negotiations Have Hit the Wall, but the End is Not in Sight

Simon Sweeney (University of York) The hard ball negotiation just got harder still. The Brexit news last week was depressing but unsurprising. Depressing because ‘a deal’ would serve both sides by helping diplomatic relations, benefiting mutual security, and serving the needs of industry and jobs. It would bring a collective sigh of relief in Ireland,…
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An Unpopular View on Brexit and EU Defence 

Øyvind Svendsen (NUPI) As for now, the prospects of any formal future EU-UK relationship on security and defence is in shambles. However, leaving security and defence out of the 2020 Brexit negotiations on the future relationship may have been a wise move from the UK. Realizing that the lengthy UK process to agree on and ratify…
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The Trust Deficit and the Internal Market Bill: Challenges for a Post-Brexit Dispute Resolution Regime Between the EU and the UK

Rishi Gulati (Dublin City University) It is trite to say that the presence of an independent and impartial dispute resolution system that can amicably resolve international disputes is necessary to maintain international peace and security. In fact, the development of a relatively robust international adjudicative framework since the 1990s is one of the most remarkable…
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Backstop, Frontstop, Full Stop?

Cathal McCall (Queen’s University Belfast) Backstop The backstop became the major bone of contention in the Draft Agreement on the Withdrawal of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland from the European Union and the European Atomic Energy Community (2018). It was contained in Draft Agreement’s Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland. The Protocol decreed…
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Disruptive Transitioning and the New Political Normal

Gerard McCann (St Mary’s University College, QUB) The ongoing tussle between Downing Street and Brussels over the problematic Internal Market Bill has not been wholly unexpected.1 The political trajectory, where the United Kingdom (UK) government would willingly break international law, contravene already given governmental commitments and frustrate the workings of the Belfast Agreement, was predicable.…
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Boris Johnson’s Brexit Myopia

Jonathan Stevenson (International Institute for Strategic Studies) During the run-up to the June 2016 referendum on Brexit and for a time thereafter, Brexiteers neglected the importance of Northern Ireland – a 56% majority of which would vote to remain – in their calculations. In particular, they failed to appreciate the political role that the European…
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Retained EU Case Law: A Fourth Option

Kate Ollerenshaw (University of Cambridge) The Ministry of Justice issued a consultation paper on Retained EU Case Law on 2 July 2020, seeking views on the exercise of the powers contained within Section 6(5A) of the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018 (“the 2018 Act”) that were inserted by Section 26(1) of the European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Act 2020 (“the 2020…
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The Rule of Law, the UK’s Advocate-General and Brexit

Alan S. Reid (Sheffield Hallam University) Introduction Brexit is unprecedented in its complexity. However, the very fact that Brexit would wreak legal uncertainty was entirely predictable. Extricating the United Kingdom from the orbit of the European Union legal space was always going to be fraught with legal minefields, given the UK’s 47-year membership of the…
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The Internal Market Bill and Northern Ireland

Clare Rice (Newcastle University) Summary The publication of the UK’s Internal Market Bill (IMB) on 9th September marked a decisive change in course for talks with the EU. Days of speculation about what it would contain after a scoop from journalist Peter Foster sent shockwaves across the globe, with responses from senior figures in the…
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The Internal Market Bill and EU Law

Catherine Barnard (University of Cambridge) The Internal Market Bill, published yesterday, is intended to create a framework for trade to operate across the four UK nations post-Brexit. The problems the UK is having to address are – on a smaller scale – just like the problems that the EU had to face. The EU’s response:…
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The Continuity Bill is Dead, Long Live the Continuity Bill – Regulatory Alignment and Divergence in Scotland Post-Brexit

Christopher McCorkindale (University of Strathclyde), Aileen McHarg (University of Durham) and Tom Mullen (University of Glasgow) Readers of this blog will be aware of the dispute between the Scottish and UK Governments over who should legislate in areas hitherto covered by EU law after Brexit (or more accurately after the end of the post-withdrawal Implementation…
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The Future of EU Law in UK Law Schools

Stuart MacLennan (Coventry University) EU law has been an integral part of the legal order of the UK since 1973, and features in every qualifying law degree taught in each of three jurisdictions – Scotland, England & Wales, and Northern Ireland – at the date of the UK’s exit. It is, consequently, necessary for those…
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Post-Brexit: the Future UK-EU Construction Industry Relationship

Jennifer Charlson (University of Wolverhampton) The construction sector’s importance to the UK’s economy is explained. The UK-EU Political Declaration incorporates clauses relevant to the construction industry which are explored in this article. However, if no UK-EU agreement is reached by 31 December 2020, the UK will trade with the EU on World Trade Organisation rules.…
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The Impact of Brexit on ‘Bail-Inable’ Liabilities under English Law

Pier Mario Lupinu (University of Luxembourg) Over three years have passed since the unprecedent decision by the UK to trigger Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union in order to withdraw from the EU membership. From that moment on, multiple legal issues emerged, which mostly depend on the finalisation of an agreement setting the…
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Continuity and Change: The Impact of Brexit on UK Employment Law

Niall O’Connor (University of Essex) There is no doubt that the EU has become an important source of employment rights in the UK. The Union has already exercised its legislative competence in fields as diverse as working time, business transfers and collective redundancies. The protection granted in this legislation is often reinforced by fundamental employment…
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The UK Government Created Expectations by IP Investors to then Breach their Trust, Ditching the Unified Patent Court’s Momentum

Riccardo Vecellio Segate (University of Macau) Within the portfolio of initiatives dedicated to enhancing EU’s competitiveness and global outreach, institutions in Brussels have long striven for delivering on the promise of a more coherent system of intellectual property, able to compete on equal footing with the US market and an increasingly assertive China, where legislative…
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Post Brexit Challenges for Criminal Justice Co-operation

Valsamis Mitsilegas (QMUL) Developing a partnership on security and criminal justice co-operation is a key priority for both the UK and the EU after Brexit. That much is evident from the recently published negotiating positions of both the UK and the EU. A reading of these documents reveals a common ambition of the two parties to ensure post-Brexit…
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The Future of EU-UK Relations after the High Level Conference

Ferdinando Nelli Feroci (former Permanent Representative of Italy to the EU) In their virtual meeting of June 15th, the leaders of the EU institutions and the British Prime Minister acknowledged that a new momentum was required in the negotiations on the future relations between the EU and the UK. They also announced their determination to…
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Event Report: Brexit, Covid-19 and the Transition Period

On Thursday 11th June 2020 the DCU Brexit Institute hosted a webinar on ‘Brexit, Covid-19 and the Transition Period’. The event was opened by a keynote speech by Stefaan De Rynck, of the European Commission Negotiating Task Force on EU-UK Relations and continued with a round-table discussion featuring Edoardo Celeste (DCU), Colin Hunt (CEO of…
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Amid a Global Emergency, No Apparent Urgency to Conclude the Future EU-UK Agreement

Joelle Grogan (Middlesex University) Amidst a global pandemic, the latest rounds of Brexit negotiations on a Future UK-EU Relationship Agreement have had little attention and less scrutiny. There are far more pressing and immediate concerns in tackling a global health emergency which (at the time of writing) counts over 7 million confirmed cases worldwide. In…
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The Certainty of No Deal post Brexit?

Alan S. Reid (Sheffield Hallam University) Given that horse racing has recently returned to UK shores, the nation can once again partake in one of its favourite pastimes – taking a punt. The biggest gamble facing the United Kingdom beyond the Covid-19 pandemic is the default of No-Deal Brexit after the expiry of the transition…
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A Road to Nowhere? The UK’s Approach to Implementing the NI Protocol

Clare Rice (Newcastle University Law School) The UK government’s long-awaited command paper, outlining a framework of how it plans to implement the Protocol on Ireland and Northern Ireland of the Withdrawal Agreement, was published on 20 May. There was anticipation that this would provide an insight to the UK’s thinking on not only the macro-level…
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Keir Starmer Wins Election for Labour Leadership

Keir Starmer, until recently Shadow Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, has been elected today as the successor of Jeremy Corbyn in taking up the leadership of the Labour Party. Among his rivals, Rebecca Long-Bailey received 28% of the vote, and Lisa Nandy the 16% in the final leg of the election. Sir…
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Covid-19 and EU Integration: Back to the Origins?

Chiara Graziani  (University of Genoa) The spread of the “new” Coronavirus (Covid-19), besides shedding light on several challenging public law issues, opens up to considerations about relationships between the European Union (EU) and member states in times of public health emergency. At the domestic level, Coronavirus gave rise to disparate responses among EU countries. The first…
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On Brexit: the Multidisciplinary Question of how EU Law Travels

Elaine Fahey (City, University of London) How EU law travels,[1] how it is forced upon or foisted upon or voluntarily accepted by third countries, partners, associations or regions is a vast multi-disciplinary question.  Brexit has exposed an important debate as to the gap between the travel of EU law and how much ‘travel’ partners need…
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Brexit and the GDPR in Transition

Giovanni De Gregorio (University of Milano Bicocca) On 31 January 2020, Brexit occurred. The United Kingdom left the European Union and a new transition period began until the end of 2020. During this period EU rules will remain in force while the relationship been the UK and EU will be subject to negotiation. This rule…
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Behind the Scenes of Brexit: An Inside Look on the Work of UK Supreme Court

Simon Drugda (University of Copenhagen) The UK referendum on its continued membership in the European Union had taken place on June 16, 2016, but it took almost four years until the country eventually left the EU on January 31, 2020. During that time, the Supreme Court decided twice on questions related to the withdrawal of…
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The EU-UK Negotiations and the Mandate of the European Commission

Giovanni Zaccaroni (DCU Brexit Institute) On 25 February 2020, the Council formally appointed the European Commission as the post-Brexit negotiator between the EU and the United Kingdom. This is the formal opening of Phase Two of Brexit and responds to the need, according to the Art. 218 TFEU procedure, to have a single EU negotiator…
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Brexit Phase 2: the Negotiating Directives of the European Commission

Giovanni Zaccaroni (DCU Brexit Institute) The European Commission has recently released a recommendation to the Council to open negotiations on a new partnership with the United Kingdom, and Phase 2 of the Brexit process is now officially open. This demonstrates that, against the odds of what many politicians in the United Kingdom maintained, Brexit is…
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The Proud, Sovereign, Independent Nation that is the United Kingdom: What next?

Alan S. Reid (Sheffield Hallam University) Brexit is done. The General Election result of December the 12th 2019 provided certainty. That certainty is that the UK leaves the EU on the 31st of January 2020, at 12am Central European Time. However, Getting Brexit Done does not eliminate uncertainty. Indeed, if anything is certain, it is…
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Brexit is done? Brexit has only just begun

Joelle Grogan (Middlesex University) From 11.01 pm (or 12.01 pm Brussels time) on 31 January 2020, the UK will no longer be a Member State of the European Union. The Withdrawal Agreement between the UK and the EU which determines the process of the UK’s departure from the EU was signed in Brussels on 28…
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Brexit and a Brief History of Time

John Cotter (Keele University) On the 2nd September 1752, the people of Great Britain and its Empire went to bed as normal. When they woke up the following morning, they had lost eleven days; it was now the 14th September 1752. This curious occurrence was not owing to a bout of mass hibernation or carelessness,…
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Event Report: Brexit and the New EU Institutional Cycle  

Jasmine Faudone (DCU Brexit Institute) On 12th December 2019, the Brexit Institute hosted an event on ‘Brexit and the New EU Institutional Cycle’, organized in partnership with the German – Italian Centre for European Excellence at Villa Vigoni, with the support of the European Parliament Information Office in Ireland. The event featured a keynote speech given by…
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The legal implications of Brexit for the Alternative Investment Fund Industry

Alexandros Seretakis (Trinity College Dublin) Following the decision by the UK to leave the EU, the European alternative investment fund industry has been confronted with legal uncertainty regarding the post-Brexit relationships between market participants in the EU and the UK. The UK’s asset management industry is the second largest in the world and the largest…
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Wither Green Brexit? Northern Ireland’s environment and the new Brexit Deal

Viviane Gravey (Queen’s University Belfast) Another deal, another extension, another general election: recent Brexit developments invite us to revisit what we think Brexit means and the impact it will have on the UK in general and Northern Ireland in particular. This is notably the case for one of the (few) positive surprises of the Brexit process…
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Fools Rush Out: On the Withdrawal Agreement and EU (WA) Bill

Fools Rush Out: On the Withdrawal Agreement and EU (WA) Bill   Joelle Grogan (Middlesex University) Few actions when done quickly are done well – and law-making has certainly never been one of them. Late in the evening of 21 October 2019, the long-awaited, and highly controversial, European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill (WAB) was published.…
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Johnson, the Military, and the No-Deal

Johnson, the Military, and the No-Deal   Luigi Lonardo (King’s College London) History books are set to write the name of the UK’s prime minister, Boris Johnson, as that of the man who will deliver Brexit despite the two conflicting motivations that he himself represented for his country. In his ‘acceptance speech’ as leader of…
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A Backstop for the Backward?

A Backstop for the Backward? Colin Murray (Newcastle University)   A Brexit deal is, on paper at least, done. Michel Barnier solemnly informed the gathered media that the controversial backstop arrangements contained within the draft Withdrawal Agreement’s Ireland/Northern Ireland Protocol have been replaced by a new “democratic cornerstone”. The question that remains is whether this…
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Growing Momentum for a Deal

Growing Momentum for a Deal     Jennifer Powers (Alternative Arrangements Commission Technical Panel) Harold Wilson’s observation that ‘a week is a long time in politics’ needs updating for our Brexit times. After three long years of dithering and months of paralysis, the prospect of a deal has risen sharply overnight following the publication of…
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Boris Johnson’s Non-Strategy for a No Deal Brexit

Boris Johnson’s Non-Strategy for a No Deal Brexit   Scott Lucas (University of Birmingham) To state the obvious and essential point, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his senior Ministers and advisors are dedicating themselves to a No Deal Brexit crash-out from the European Union on 31 October. Johnson still makes noises about wanting a…
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Brexit’s Implications for UK-EU Relations in Justice and Home Affairs

Brexit’s Implications for UK-EU Relations in Justice and Home Affairs Christine Andreeva (Dublin City University)  The EU’s Area of Freedom Security and Justice (AFSJ; also referred to as Justice and Home Affairs – JHA) has a very specific mandate as compared to other EU policy areas. Officially a shared competence since the 2009 Lisbon Treaty, the…
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Not United, but Linked in Negotiations with the EU: Switzerland and the UK

Not United, but Linked in Negotiations with the EU: Switzerland and the UK Charlotte Sieber-Gasser (DCU Brexit Institute) Since its decision not to join the EEA in 1992, Switzerland has been continuously negotiating with the EU on various aspects of cooperation, participation and integration. Most recent negotiations about an institutional framework to some of the…
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Brexit, Spain and British Gibraltar

Brexit, Spain and British Gibraltar Gerry O’Reilly (Dublin City University)   Brexit has been closely followed by UK and EU citizens alike in the British Overseas Territory of Gibraltar (area: 6.8 sq. km.) and its Spanish hinterlands – Campo de Gibraltar in Andalucía. For people there, as in Dundalk, Newry, Derry/Londonderry and Ireland, an immediate…
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European Parliament elections in times of (delayed) Brexit

European Parliament elections in times of (delayed) Brexit Patrick Bijsmans (Maastricht University)   At the time of writing, we are nearing the third anniversary of the Brexit referendum of 23 June 2016. While a cause for celebration or a grave feeling of loss, depending on where you stand on the issue, it almost feels like nothing…
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The Ireland-European Election Conundrum

The Ireland/European Election Conundrum Gary Murphy (Dublin City University)   Ever since Ireland first held contested elections to the European Parliament in 1979 conventional political wisdom has suggested that attitudes to the incumbent government or to the candidates on offer have shaped such elections in Ireland. Sentiment about the EU itself has had little impact…
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European Parliament Elections 2019 and the European demos in the midst of difficult challenges

European Parliament Elections 2019 and the European demos in the midst of difficult challenges Anastasia Deligiaouri (Dublin City University) The European Parliament (EP) is the only institution in the EU, which enjoys a direct election procedure from European citizens. Multilingualism and multiculturalism are both inherent and well embedded in its structure and give the EP its…
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Belated Brexit and Groundhog Talks in Northern Ireland

Belated Brexit and Groundhog Talks in Northern Ireland Cillian McGrattan (Ulster University)   Fumbled Beginnings The latest round of talks in Northern Ireland to restore devolved power-sharing has not begun well. The Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) MP, Ian Paisley, for instance, has suggested that Tanaiste Simon Coveney should ‘butt out’ of Northern Irish affairs. Paisley’s…
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Years Into the Brexit Process, the UK Still Faces Fundamental Choices for its Future Relationship with the EU

Years Into the Brexit Process, the UK Still Faces Fundamental Choices for its Future Relationship with the EU Pervez Ghauri (University of Birmingham) and Ursula Ott (Nottingham Trent University) Pervez Ghauri and Ursula Ott in their paper “Brexit negotiations: from negotiation space to agreement zones” use bargaining theory models of rational behavior and the negotiation…
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Thirty-Four Months On: What Next For BREXIT?

Thirty-Four Months On: What Next For BREXIT? Tom Frost (University of Sussex) On 10 April, an emergency meeting of the European Council was convened to discuss the latest developments on Brexit. On 5 April, the Prime Minister wrote to Donald Tusk, President of the European Council, asking for a further extension to the Article 50…
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Event Report: High – Level Policy Dialogue, 4 April 2019

Event Report: High – Level Policy Dialogue, 4 April 2019 Charlotte Sieber-Gasser (DCU Brexit Institute) On 4 April 2019, Grant Thornton hosted the High-Level Policy Dialogue between Georgios Papacostantinou (EUI School of Transnational Governance, former Finance Minister of Greece) and Denis MacShane (former Europe Minister of the UK), organised by the DCU Brexit Institute. Given the…
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An alternative to the Irish Backstop? An “All-Ireland Common No-Custom Area” as a Frontier Traffic Area under Art. XXIV GATT for products originating in the island

Giorgio Sacerdoti & Paola Mariani (Bocconi University) This article is a proposal which will be discussed in future blogs. (a) The situation envisaged under the Backstop. Let us first recall the terms of the issue. During the transition period (which will last until, at the latest, December 2022), the UK government will negotiate other future…
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Country before Party?

Country before Party? Ioannis Asimakopoulos (DCU Brexit Institute) While preparations for a no-deal Brexit have intensified, while May’s deal has already been voted against twice, and with time running out, suddenly a glimpse of hope arose that a no-deal Brexit can be actually prevented. Ironically enough, it is not the parliament’s effort to reach a…
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Brexit in the Spirit of the Treaties

Brexit in the Spirit of the Treaties Ton van den Brink (University of Utrecht) A new phase of Brexit uncertainty has started now that the British Prime Minister has asked for an extension of Article 50. Uncertainty on whether the EU will agree on the length of the extension, on how it will be used…
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A Week is a Very Long Time in Brexitland

A Week is a Very Long Time in Brexitland Alan S. Reid (Sheffield Hallam University) Brexit continues to surprise, dismay and amaze in equal measure. Like any good soap opera, a good cliff-hanger ending is required at the end of every episode of Brexitland 2019. This week and last week were no different, producing notable…
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Fog In Channel – The Continent is Confused

Fog in Channel – The Continent is Confused Pietro Manzini (University of Bologna) Perhaps the famous headline ‘Fog in Channel – the Continent is cut off’ is a fake, but certainly in these days of Brexit the Channel is full of fog and the Continent – from where I write – is very confused. With…
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No Extension Without Elections

No Extension without Election European Parliament Elections as an Obstacle to Article 50 Extension Mauro Gatti After the 12-13 March 2019 parliamentary votes on Brexit, it would seem that the UK will ask the EU for an extension under Article 50 TEU, to prepare for a “no deal” scenario or to approve the Withdrawal Agreement.…
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The Fate of the Withdrawal Agreement and the Extension of Article 50

The Fate of the Withdrawal Agreement and the Extension of Article 50 Charlotte Sieber-Gasser (University of Lucerne) Following the announcement of House of Commons Speaker John Bercow, the British parliament is unlikely to vote for a third time on the Withdrawal Agreement. The agreement has been rejected by parliament twice in the past; for the…
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Towards a New Cliff Edge in May

Towards a New Cliff Edge in May? Larissa Brunner and Fabian Zuleeg (European Policy Centre) While the outcome of Brexit remains unclear after yet more turbulence in the UK Parliament, what appears more or less certain is that the UK is unlikely to leave the EU on 29 March, though a no deal exit on…
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The Failure of the EU-UK Legal Guarantees to Save the Withdrawal Agreement

The Failure of the EU-UK Legal Guarantees to Save the Withdrawal Agreement Chloé Papazian (DCU Brexit Institute) Exactly three months have passed since the UK Prime Minister Theresa May postponed the vote by the House of Commons on the withdrawal agreement on 11 December 2018. The following day, she embarked upon a European tour to…
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An Overview of the No-Deal Brexit Omnibus Bill

An Overview of the No-Deal Brexit Omnibus Bill Clíodhna Joyce-Daly and Chloé Papazian (Dublin City University) Last Friday 22 February, the Irish Government published the Omnibus Bill also called the Consequential Provisions Bill 2019 for the Withdrawal of the United Kingdom Without a Deal which will enter into force if the UK leaves the EU…
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Event Report: Brexit and Agri-Food

Event Report: Brexit and Agri-Food Chloé Papazian (DCU Brexit Institute) On January 31, the DCU Brexit Institute hosted an event on Brexit and Agri-Food. The event was opened by Micheline Calmy-Rey (former President of Switzerland) and featured a Panel discussion with leading academics and industry specialists. The Panel included Eric Clinton (Dublin City University), Shane…
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Brexit: What Next?

Brexit: What Next? Federico Fabbrini (Director, DCU Brexit Institute) Last night the UK Parliament voted  resoundingly against the Brexit deal that the UK Government had negotiated with the European Union. As largely anticipated, and notwithstanding last minute political reassurances from the Presidents of the European Council and the European Commission, Prime Minister Theresa May failed…
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Event Report: Brexit, the Backstop and the Island of Ireland

Event Report: Brexit, the Backstop and the Island of Ireland Alessandro De Nicola  (DCU Brexit Institute) On 13 December 2018, the DCU Brexit Institute, in partnership with the Centre for Constitutional Change (CCC) organized an event on “Brexit, the Backstop and the Island of Ireland”, held at the Helix, in Dublin City University. This event…
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The Irish Backstop Plan: Alternative Routes or Clearer Guarantees?

Upcoming Event, 13 December: Brexit, the Backstop and the Island of Ireland The Irish Backstop Plan: Alternative Routes or Clearer Guarantees? Chloé Papazian (DCU Brexit Institute) The political chaos currently prevailing in Westminster has increasingly exposed the risk of a hard Brexit, namely a withdrawal of the UK from the EU in March 2019 without any deal.…
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The Brexit Deal and Foreign Policy

The Brexit Deal and Foreign Policy: The UK’s ‘Global Positioning’ between the EU and the US  Cornelia-Adriana Baciu (Dublin City University) The UK’s withdrawal from the €10 billion Galileo programme, and the intention to build its own satellite navigation system compatible with the US Global Positioning System, might signal a British foreign policy vision more closely…
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The Brexit Deal and the UK-EU Security Relationship

The Brexit Deal and the UK-EU Security Relationship: Insights from the Withdrawal Agreement and the Political Declaration Helena Farrand Carrapico (Aston University) On the 29th of March 2019, the cooperation mechanisms and instruments of the Area of Freedom, Security and Justice (AFSJ) will cease to apply, in their current format, to the United Kingdom (UK), following…
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The Brexit Deal and Gibraltar

The Brexit Deal and Gibraltar Maria Mut Bosque (International University of Catalonia) On the 25th of November 2018, the EU-27 leaders endorsed the draft Brexit withdrawal agreement and approved the political declaration on the future relationship between the EU and the UK. These texts now need to be passed by the other EU Institutions in…
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The Art of the Deal: The European Council and Brexit

The Art of the Deal: the European Council and Brexit Federico Fabbrini (Professor of European Law & Director of DCU Brexit Institute) On Sunday 25 November 2018 the European Council approved the Brexit deal, giving its blessing to the draft international treaty regulating the orderly withdrawal of the UK from the EU and to the connected…
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The Brexit Deal and Britain’s Steep Learning Curve

The Brexit Deal and Britain’s Steep Learning Curve Stephen Wall (former Permanent Representative of the UK to the EU) I have always thought of a steep learning curve as being both arduous and fast: you need to learn a lot, and quickly. But, in the case of Brexit, both the Government and public seem to…
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The Brexit Deal: The Final Steps to Its Approval

The Brexit Deal: The Final Steps to Its Approval Ian Cooper (DCU Brexit Institute) This morning, Donald Tusk announced that the EU and the UK have reached an agreement on a 26-page Political Declaration on the framework for a future EU-UK relationship. Together with the 585-page draft Withdrawal Agreement, this is the long-awaited Brexit Deal.…
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The Brexit Deal is the Best the UK Could Have Hoped For

The Brexit Deal is the Best the UK Could Have Hoped For Angelos Chryssogelos (Harvard University) It is hard not to feel sorry for Theresa May. Her tenure as UK Prime Minister is not expected to last much longer once the House of Commons votes on the Withdrawal Agreement she negotiated with the EU after a…
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Dispute Resolution in the Brexit Deal: Is There Salvation Outside the CJEU Church?

Dispute Resolution in the Brexit Deal: Is There Salvation Outside the CJEU Church? Filippo Fontanelli (Edinburgh Law School) On 14 November 2018, the Commission published the Draft Agreement on the withdrawal of the UK from the EU (the Draft Agreement). The Draft Agreement is a draft of an international agreement between the post-Brexit EU and…
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The Brexit Deal

The Brexit Deal Federico Fabbrini (Director of the DCU Brexit Institute) Yesterday evening, Wednesday 14 November 2018, the United Kingdom and the European Union reached an agreement on the terms of an orderly withdrawal of the UK from the EU. The Brexit deal, which includes the full text of a withdrawal treaty as well as…
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Merkel’s Slow Exit, Ireland and Brexit

German Chancellor Angela Merkel steps down from her party’s leadership: Will her country’s Brexit position soften? Aaron Burnett (Emerging Voices Group, IIEA) Less than two weeks before announcing she would not campaign again to lead Germany’s ruling Christian Democratic Union (CDU), Chancellor Merkel appeared before the Bundestag to outline the Brexit position her government would…
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Politics, Not Interests, Will Shape the UK-EU Security Relationship

Politics, Not Interests, Will Shape the UK-EU Security Relationship Benjamin Martill (London School of Economics) Monika Sus (Hertie School of Governance)   The Easy Question? It was once thought that managing the security and defence aspects of Brexit would be easy. The intergovernmental nature of EU security and defence policy has always meant that the…
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Event Report: Brexit by Design or by Default?

Event Report: Brexit: By Design or By Default? Assessing the State of the Withdrawal Process Chloé Papazian (DCU Brexit Institute) On 6 September 2018, the Brexit Institute organized the kick-off event of the academic year assessing the state of the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the European Union. The event featured an opening debate by Members…
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History and Brexit

What does the Eden Plan tell about Brexit? Andreja Pegan (DCU Brexit Institute, Dublin) While negotiations between the UK and the European Union (EU) on the withdrawal, transition and future relations are nearing a close, it is time to think about how the UK will behave towards the EU after Brexit. Given the EU’s market, and…
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The German Bundestag and Brexit

The German Bundestag and Brexit: Defending Stability or Calling for Change? Frank Wendler (Goethe-Universität, Frankfurt am Main) The political debate on Brexit in Germany highlights two major questions: First, how to define the EU’s stance on the terms of the UK’s withdrawal and its future relationship with Europe; and second, how to identify reasons for…
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Five Reasons the May-Macron Meeting Won’t Change the French Position on Brexit

Five Reasons the May-Macron Meeting Won’t Change the French Position on Brexit Benjamin Leruth (University of Canberra) Last Friday, French President Emmanuel Macron met with Theresa May at his summer residence in Bormes-Les-Mimosas. These talks were informal (Michel Barnier is and remains Chief Negotiator for the European Union), though it suggests a change in May’s strategy…
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Preparedness and Contingency: The Commission Starts to Plan for a No-Deal Brexit

Preparedness and Contingency: The Commission Starts to Plan for a No-Deal Brexit Salvador Llaudes (Elcano Royal Institute) Chequers was supposed to be a turning point in the Brexit negotiations. It has indeed been so, although not in a completely successful way for the British Government. Since then, the political situation in the UK has reached…
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The Seven Circles of Brexit

The Seven Circles of Brexit Ian Cooper (DCU Brexit Institute) Last Friday, it seemed as though Theresa May had secured her full cabinet’s agreement on a common negotiating position that would set the UK on a glidepath towards a soft Brexit. Days later this “Chequers agreement” was thrown into doubt by the resignation of her…
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The “Known Unknowns” of Brexit

The “Known Unknowns” of Brexit A Flowchart Chronicle of a Mess Foretold Glyn Morgan (Collegio Carlo Alberto, Torino, and Maxwell School, Syracuse University) Teaching a class last year on Brexit to American students, I discovered that—like impatient readers of a “Whodunnit”—they wanted to know how it would all turn out. “Too early to say,” I’d…
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Brexit, Ireland and the June European Council

Brexit, Ireland and the June European Council Federico Fabbrini Today and tomorrow, 28 and 29 June 2018, the European Council – the body grouping the heads of state and government of the EU member states, together with the President of the European Commission – was due to have a major meeting on Brexit. The meeting…
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Norway’s EU Lessons — How Transferable Are They to the UK?

Norway’s EU lessons – How Transferable Are They to the UK? John Erik Fossum (ARENA, University of Oslo) Hans Petter Graver (Department of Private Law, University of Oslo) The purpose of this short blog entry is to consider the transferability to the UK of some of the lessons from Norway’s EU experience, as these were…
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UK-EU Intelligence Information Sharing after Brexit

UK-EU Intelligence Information Sharing after Brexit Chiara Graziani (University of Genoa) Intelligence information sharing is a crucial issue in the Brexit negotiations. The most recent stance of the UK government on EU-UK security cooperation, of which intelligence information sharing is part, was expressed in the government “Future Partnership Paper”, published in September 2017, and reinforced at…
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Labour Standards and the Future EU-UK Trade Agreement

Labour Standards and the Future EU-UK Trade Agreement Mark Bell (Trinity College Dublin) There was relatively little attention paid to labour standards in the Brexit negotiations on the Withdrawal Agreement. Of course, the free movement of workers and the rights of EU citizens has been a core issue in these discussions, but those aspects of…
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Brexit and the Future of Transatlantic Relations

Brexit and the Future of Transatlantic Relations   by Joris Larik (Leiden University) Whatever the EU and UK end up deciding in their withdrawal agreement, transitional arrangement or future free trade agreement will be between them. To the rest of the world, it will be what lawyers call res inter alios acta—a thing agreed between…
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On Brexit, the EU’s Demand for a Short Transition is Short-Sighted

On Brexit, the EU’s Demand for a Short Transition is Short-Sighted by Ian Cooper* (DCU Brexit Institute) Tomorrow marks the exact halfway point in the two-year period between the UK’s triggering of Article 50 and “Brexit day” – 29 March 2019. Time is running short, which raises the question: Is the EU taking the right…
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The European Council Confronts the Post-Brexit Future

The European Council Confronts the Post-Brexit Future by Andrew Duff The European Council (22-23 March) has to assess the strategic impact of Brexit on the future of Europe. Although the heads of government have followed the Brexit saga with regret turning to alarm, it is the Commission’s Task Force 50 under Michel Barnier that has…
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The EU (Withdrawal) Bill and Human Rights in the UK: The State of The Art

On the political front, Brexit negotiations are proceeding; at the same time, from a strictly legal perspective, the tool with which Brexit will be managed at domestic level, i.e. the European Union (Withdrawal) Bill (EUWB), is making progress in Parliament. On December 20, 2017, it was considered and amended by a Committee of the Whole House. The next step will come on January 16-17, 2018, when MPs will examine the Bill at remaining stages.

One of the most consequential – and politically challenging – amendments made in the December session subjected the final terms of withdrawal to a statute of the Parliament (sec. 9(1)). Nonetheless, there are sections of the Bill that did not undergo changes during the last reading, but that are equally controversial. These include its treatment of EU provisions related to human rights, in particular those enshrined in the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union (CFREU).

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Workshop on Moving on? from Divorce to Future EU – UK Relations

On 7 December 2017 the DCU Brexit Institute organised, in partnership with Ibec, a workshop on “Moving on? From the Divorce to Future EU – UK Relations”. This was a general survey of the first phase of the Brexit talks, concluding a series of workshops addressing the three key issues which had to be addressed before moving on to the second phase. (As it happens, on 8 December, the morning after the workshop, it was revealed that an agreement had been reached that apparently signalled sufficient progress to allow the talks to move on to Phase 2.)  

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Sufficient Progress? Ireland’s Brexit Conundrum

Next week, on 14-15 December 2017 the European Council is set to decide whether sufficient progress has been made in the negotiations on the UK withdrawal from the EU to begin a discussion on the terms of the future relations between the UK and the EU. As is well known, the European Council concluded in October 2017 that, given the uncertainties of the UK Government, not enough progress had taken place by then in the negotiations and that therefore the beginning of phase 2 in the Brexit talks had to be postponed.

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