Following the Prime Minister's announcement today I am delighted to confirm that negotiations have now concluded with the EU on our future relationship – and we have secured an excellent deal for the United Kingdom, which fully delivers on what the British people voted for both in the referendum and the last election.
As promised, this deal takes back control of our laws, borders, money, trade and fisheries – and it ends any role for the European Court. From 1st January 2021, the United Kingdom will have political and economic independence – and is able to thrive as a country now fully outside the European Union.
We will enter the New Year as a fully sovereign nation. 2021 will be our opportunity to show what Global Britain means to the rest of the world: striking trade deals with new markets, reasserting ourselves as a liberal and free trading nation; and acting as a force for good in the world.
The agreement that has been secured today:
- Is based on international law, not EU law. There is no role for the European Court of Justice and no requirements for the UK to continue to follow EU law. We will be a truly independent country, with our sovereign Parliament in full control of the laws that we live by.
- It is the first free trade agreement based on zero tariffs and zero quotas that the EU has ever agreed. This will be fantastic news for families and businesses in every part of the UK. Businesses will be able to continue to trade smoothly and people will be able to continue to buy goods from Europe tariff-free.
- Secures on our pledge to protect and boost our economy and provides for continued market access across a broad scope of key service sectors, including professional and business services. This market access will support new and continued investment between businesses. It also means that business travellers will be able to easily move between the EU and the UK for short term visits and the agreement on financial services ensures financial stability and consumer protection.
- Delivers on our commitment to maintaining high labour, environment and climate standards without giving the EU any say over our rules.
- Allows us to introduce our own modern subsidy system so that we can better support businesses to grow and thrive. This new subsides system will operate in a that best suits the interests of UK industries - outside the EU State Aid regime.
- Supports our primary objective of prioritising the safety and security of the UK’s citizens. It offers streamlined co-operation on law enforcement, ensuring we continue to effectively tackle serious organised crime and counter terrorism, protecting the public, and bringing criminals to justice. It also provides for future cooperation between the UK and EU on emerging security challenges, such as cyber and health security, including continuing to work together on tackling the spread of Covid-19.
- Recognises UK sovereignty over our fishing waters and puts us in a position to rebuild our fishing fleet and increase quotas, overturning the inequity that British fishermen have faced for over four decades. By the end of the five year transition we will have full control of our waters and the amount of fish available to UK fishermen will have risen from half to two-thirds.
- Provides for the UK’s participation in certain EU programmes, furthering our commitment to making the UK a science and research superpower. This deal will fulfil our manifesto commitment to participate in the Horizon Europe programme, but also the Euratom Research and Training programme, and the space programme, Copernicus.
- Delivers for our citizens, making our daily lives easier. It includes arrangements for airlines and hauliers that provides them with certainty, and gives people the ability to travel to and from the EU easily for work and holidays; a social security agreement that has practical benefits for UK citizens including accessing healthcare when travelling in the EU; and agreements on energy which will benefit consumers by helping to keep prices down.
- Finally, the deal delivers for the entire UK, protecting the integrity of our internal market and Northern Ireland’s place within it.
Our negotiating team has done an extraordinary job. Many people said this deal could not be done or was impossible in the time available. We have proved those views wrong. We have agreed the biggest trade and cooperation deal in the world, on a huge range of issues relevant to everyone in our country, in record time and in hugely challenging conditions.