Today the European Commission (EC) of the European Union (EU) gave Michael Barnier a mandate to negotiate with the United Kingdom. As they are in the temporary state until the final break with the European Union, the transition period last until 31st December 2020. This means, this will last until 1st January 2021. That is the time table for this and the mandate giving today from the European Commission, which sets the standards for what to come.
The key things for me was these highlights, which really shows that the United Kingdom is really losing. There is nothing in the mandate, which gives the UK any edge. Only shows what the EU is considering important. While the UK will have to negotiate hard to get things better out of this. Especially considering they only have a taskforce within Downing Street Number 10. They don’t even have a unit fixing this anymore.
Just take a look!
“ANNEX to COUNCIL DECISION authorising the opening of negotiations with the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland for a new partnership agreement” (25.02.2020)
“reflect the United Kingdom’s status as a non-Schengen third country, and that a nonmember of the Union, that is not subject to the same obligations as a member, cannot have the same rights and enjoy the same benefits as a member” (EU, 25.02.2020).
Free Trade Area:
“The envisaged partnership should include appropriate rules of origin based on the standard preferential rules of origin of the Union and taking into account the Union’s interest” (EU, 25.02.2020).
“As third country operators, United Kingdom road haulage operators should not be granted the same level of rights and benefits as those enjoyed by Union road haulage operators in respect of road freight transport operations from one Union Member State to another (“grand cabotage”) and road freight transport operations within the territory of one Union Member State (“cabotage”)” (EU, 25.02.2020).
“Besides the cooperation on conservation, management and regulation, the objective of the provisions on fisheries should be to uphold Union fishing activities. In particular, it should aim to avoid economic dislocation for Union fishermen that have been engaged in fishing activities in the United Kingdom waters” (EU, 25.02.2020).
“ Any agreement between the Union and the United Kingdom negotiated on the basis of these negotiating directives will not include Gibraltar” (EU, 25.02.2020).
First things first. The EU shows a sign, which the UK haven’t understood or neglect to understand. It is that it will not have the benefits of the EU nor the previous membership as a nonmember, even if the politicians and Tories have acted like that since day one.
Secondly, the EU will work in its own interest, even with their paradigm Free-Trading Area, also making the cargo trade on the roads harder for British exporters from United Kingdom into the European Union. While also, trying to ensure the EU fishing boats access to UK seas. This is all clearly hitting the demands, but also the promises made from the Tories in the UK. They are not shielding the fisheries, they are making it harder for the exporters. Because, they cannot get the access and the mobility, which it has today.
Third, the EU has no concern about Gibraltar. That is really stuffing the faces of London, as they have promised Gibraltar safety and a secure future. However, this is the EU showing a shift in focus on this and putting a hard stance. As this has to be negotiated separately, by this mandates concern. This is surely done to please the Spanish in the EU.
However, what we are seeing, that the mandate isn’t that friendly, the direct approach sets the stakes and also doesn’t give way. As the EU needs to set the foot down and show there is a difference being on the outside, then being inside. Which is the wish of the UK. That is why it got to cost to become a nonmember. Peace.
The Tories think they can easily access the European Common Market without being a member of the European Union. However, today’s revelation in the draft negotiations paper from Michael Barnier proves that hassle the Boris Johnson government have to deal with. The Brexiteers will struggle with it.
Just like one key sentiment, which the UK have to understand:
“reflect the United Kingdom’s status as a non-Schengen third country, and that a non-member of the Union, that is not subject to the same obligations as a member, cannot have the same rights and enjoy the same benefits as a member” (Barnier, 03.02.2020).
This here is very revealing and sets the tone. This puts the United Kingdom on the outside, as entity on its own, but still will not have the same rights the members of Union. Neither the same obligations and therefore, will be treated differently. That is key aspect, which the UK doesn’t seem to understand.
Boris Johnson statement in return:
“The Government wishes to see a future relationship based on friendly cooperation between sovereign equals for the benefit of all our peoples. There is complete certainty that at the end of 2020 the process of transition to that relationship will be complete and that the UK will have recovered in full its economic and political independence. The Government remains committed in all circumstances to securing all those benefits for the whole of the UK and to strengthening our Union” (Boris Johnson, 03.02.2020).
This here negotiations will not be easy. The documents from Barnier in his drafts proves the technicalities, even as the British has appointed a Task Force instead of Department working inside the Office of the Prime Minister. Because, that will run so well. Not like all the Secretaries of the Exiting the EU did a good job, but they would have civil servants dwelling on and configuring the fine details. Which the answer of PM Johnson is a kids story compared to the paperwork of Barnier.
Like Barnier said:
“The envisaged partnership should establish open market access for bilateral road freight transport, including unladen journeys, made in conjunction with these operations:
by Union road haulage operators from the territory of the Union to the territory of the United Kingdom, and vice versa;
by United Kingdom road haulage operators to the territory of the Union, and vice versa.
As third country operators, United Kingdom road haulage operators should not be granted the same rights and benefits as those enjoyed by Union road haulage operators in respect of road freight transport operations from one Union Member State to another (“grand cabotage”) and road freight transport operations within the territory of one Union Member State (“cabotage”)” (Barnier, 03.02.2020)
Then Johnson said:
There should be reciprocal commitments to allow EU and UK road transport operators to provide services to, from and through each other’s territories, with associated rights, underpinned by relevant international agreements and commitments, and ensuring the necessary cooperation on monitoring and enforcement” (Boris Johnson, 03.02.2020).
Here is a typical statement towards each other. They have sort of the same pattern, but the leafy British statement, compared to the detailed EU ones. Show the work behind it and the details are expressing the needs of the EU to show difference between members and nots. The UK is a not and therefore, cannot do the same as they have done now. They got to follow more strict rules, even as they are allowed to cross the borders, but more rigorous than in the past.
These negotiations will be interesting to follow, as the UK and EU is in a stalemate, in a limbo, which is supposed to last a year. Before the final ending of the marriage is over. The Bride and Groom leaves each other and become Exes. Who knows how this will go, but the EU seems more prepared, than the UK is at the moment. Because, the statement from Boris wasn’t reassuring. When you looking into the work of EU at the moment. Peace.