The U.K. Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, has published a written statement on the U.K. Government’s proposed approach to negotiations on the U.K.’s future relationship with the EU. The U.K. formally left the EU on January 31, 2020 and entered an 11-month transition period, expiring on December 31, 2020, during which most EU legislation will continue to apply. The U.K. must now negotiate how the U.K. will interact with the EU after the end of the implementation period.
Mr. Johnson stated that the U.K. Government wishes to preserve friendly cooperation with the EU while recovering full economic and political independence. The hope is that a free trade agreement can be made along the lines of the agreement between the EU and Canada. The FTA would, in Mr. Johnson’s view, need to cover areas including market access for goods, regulatory barriers to trade, cross-border trade in services and investment and regulatory and supervisory cooperation, particularly with respect to financial services. The statement also stresses the Agreement should require both the U.K. and the EU to provide a predictable, transparent and business-friendly environment for financial services firms, with obligations on market access and fair competition. There should also be enhanced provision for regulatory and supervisory cooperation arrangements with the EU in the area of financial services.