Uk Withdrawal Agreement Document
The 2019 revisions also adapted elements of the political declaration and replaced the word “appropriate” with “appropriate” with respect to labour standards. According to Sam Lowe, a trade fellow at the Centre for European Reform, the amendment excludes labour standards from dispute resolution mechanisms.  In addition, the Equal Competition Mechanism has been postponed from the legally binding withdrawal agreement to the political declaration, and the line of the political statement that “the United Kingdom will consider taking into account alignment with trade union rules in the relevant areas” has been removed.  EU and UK negotiators have reached an agreement on the draft withdrawal agreement allowing the European Council (Article 50) to adopt guidelines for the future EU-UK relationship on 23 March 2018. The United Kingdom and the European Union reached an agreement at the European Council on the withdrawal of the United Kingdom from Great Britain and Northern Ireland from the European Union. The revised withdrawal agreement and the political declaration were discussed and approved at the European Council on 17 October 2019. On the European Union side, the European Parliament also approved the ratification of the agreement on 29 January 2020 and the Council of the European Union approved the conclusion of the agreement by e-mail on 30 January 2020.  That is why, on 30 January 2020, the European Union also tabled its instrument for ratification of the agreement, concluding the agreement and allowing it to enter into force on the date of the UK`s withdrawal from the EU on 31 January 2020, at 11 .m GMT. During the transitional period, the UK and the EU-27 will seek to conclude the agreement that will strengthen their trade relations after the end of the transition period. On the basis of the revised political declaration, the EU and the United Kingdom appear to be aiming for a comprehensive but “classic” free trade agreement for goods, services and investment. The political statement is thin in detail, but trade in goods will be based on a free trade agreement that will at least guarantee that there will be no tariffs or quotas, as well as some degree of regulatory alignment with the EU. However, as a result of the free trade agreement, customs controls are required, requiring each party to prove that the goods originate from their respective customs territory, in order to obtain duty-free treatment.
This means that the UK and the EU-27 must now agree on detailed rules of origin. This is probably a complex and tedious process. At least companies need to think about the rules of origin they want for different products and start putting pressure on them as soon as the UK and eu start negotiating the new free trade agreement. It is encouraging to note that the scope of the future trade regime appears to encompass services, including financial services and investment (although the agreement is in turn very detailed) and that it provides assurance that the agreement on future relations will offer a liberalisation of trade in services well beyond the obligations of the United Kingdom and the WTO. The political statement is a brief document and, as far as financial services is concerned, it contains few details. It is positive that, with regard to services (including financial services), the objective is to achieve a level of trade liberalization of services “well beyond” WTO obligations and to build on recent free trade agreements.