Brexit: where do we stand?
The United Kingdom will leave the European Union – a process known as 'Brexit’ – on 29 March 2019. The UK and the EU have negotiated the terms of Brexit. And they will continue to discuss their future relationship.
On 13 November 2018 the EU and UK reached an agreement on Brexit. The UK government and the 27 remaining EU member states have endorsed this agreement. Now, the European Parliament and the British parliament must approve it. Only after that can the EU and the UK implement the terms of the agreement.
The draft agreement covers a range of issues, including:
- the rights of EU citizens in the UK and British nationals in the EU (for the moment, little – if anything – will change for these people);
- the amount the UK will contribute to the EU budget (and for how long);
- the border between Ireland and Northern Ireland;
a transition period from 29 March until the end of December 2020 in which all EU rules and laws will continue to apply to the UK.You can read more about the rights of EU citizens in the UK and British nationals in the EU in a document published by the European Commission.
The Brexit negotiations are taking a long time because the task is so complicated. The video below shows why.
Only after Brexit (29 March 2019) can the EU and the UK start discussing the details of their new relationship. There will be more clarity on the new relationship between the EU and the UK only once this next phase of the negotiations has been completed. The EU and the UK have at least until 31 December 2020 to do this, as a transition period has been agreed in which all EU laws and rules will continue to apply to the UK.
The provisional agreement on Brexit has not yet been approved by the parties. The Netherlands and the EU are therefore still preparing for various scenarios. One of those scenarios is that no agreement is reached (a ‘no deal’ scenario). In that case, both parties may encounter problems like long queues at ports and aviation issues.
In a ‘no deal’ scenario there will be no arrangements for citizens’ rights and there will be no transition period. That is why the EU and the Netherlands want the parties to approve the agreement as quickly as possible.
Central government is preparing for all possible outcomes, including the least favourable ‘no deal’ scenario. It is important that businesses and members of the public also prepare for this.
On 7 January 2019 central government announced a 15-month transition period for British nationals in the Netherlands in the event that the UK leaves the EU without an agreement in place. During this transition period, nothing will change for British nationals living in the Netherlands. They will be given enough time to arrange a residence permit.