EU, UK hammer out a Brexit deal, days ahead of the deadline
04 January 2021
Britain and the European Union hammered out a Brexit trade deal on Thursday, just seven days ahead of the UK exits the 27-member trade bloc.
Under the Brexit deal, which critics said, is a narrow accord, trade worth 668 billion pounds or $909 billion in 2019 will continue to be covered after Britain exits the European trade bloc.
The deal comes just seven days ahead of Britain exits the world's biggest trading bloc.
"Deal is done," said a Downing Street communique. "We have taken back control of our money, borders, laws, trade and our fishing waters."
"The deal is fantastic news for families and businesses in every part of the UK. We have signed the first free trade agreement based on zero tariffs and zero quotas that has ever been achieved with the EU," the source said.
"We have delivered this great deal for the entire United Kingdom in record time, and under extremely challenging conditions, which protects the integrity of our internal market and Northern Ireland's place within it," the communiqué added.
Britain will no longer be bound by EU trade rules and other EU regulations. The country will also won’t be bound by the European Court of Justice.
The deal, which must be ratified by the British and European Parliaments, came together in Brussels after 11 months of grinding negotiations, culminating in a last-minute haggle over fishing rights that stretched into Christmas Eve, just a week before a year-end deadline.
The agreement leaves critical parts of the relationship to be worked out later, and British exports will still be subjected to some border checks in te English Channel, which could add to costs to exporters and causing port delays. In that sense, the deal is far short of a Brexit deal and is only a blueprint for coexistence of the two.
“It was a long and winding road, but we have got a good deal to show for it,” said Ursula von der Leyen, the president of the European Commission, the bloc’s executive arm. “This moment marks the end of a long voyage.” If approved, the agreement would take effect on 1 January, 4-1/2 years after a narrow majority of Britons voted to leave the EU.