Information about Brexit
We have grouped together information about Brexit and the future EU-UK relationship. These pages offer information, for example, on the negotiation process and the withdrawal agreement and on how UK and Finnish citizens and businesses should prepare for a withdrawal without an agreement.
The EU is ready to sign the Brexit withdrawal agreement with the UK Government. However, the House of Commons voted against the withdrawal agreement on 15 and 29 January 2019. The House of Commons will next debate the withdrawal agreement on 14 February 2019.
For the EU, the withdrawal agreement is the best attainable compromise and the only way of ensuring an orderly withdrawal of the UK from the Union. The EU is not willing to open the agreement up for negotiations. The next course of action depends on the internal politics and objectives of the UK. There are multiple scenarios. The UK must clarify how it wishes to proceed with the matter. After this, the EU will take its stance on any proposals made by the UK.
The negotiation process
On 23 June 2016, the United Kingdom held a referendum on EU membership. On 29 March 2017, the UK gave its notification of withdrawal from the EU, which triggered the two-year negotiation period.
Representatives of the European Commission and the UK Government concluded the negotiations on the withdrawal agreement in November 2018. The sole purpose of the withdrawal agreement is to ensure the UK’s orderly withdrawal from the European Union.
Citizens’ rights under the withdrawal agreement
Finland’s primary objective in the withdrawal negotiations was to secure the rights of citizens. Free movement of persons would continue unaltered until the end of the transition period.
Negotiations on the future relationship between the EU and the UK can only be started after the UK has withdrawn from the EU. In other words, a transition period is needed between the withdrawal and the future relationship.
Future relationship between the EU and the UK
The withdrawal agreement does not contain any provisions on future EU–UK relations. Negotiations on the future relationship can only be started after the UK has left the EU. A political declaration setting out the framework for the future relationship was negotiated with the UK.
Withdrawal without an agreement
If the withdrawal agreement does not enter into force by 30 March 2019 and if the two-year negotiation period is not extended, the outcome is a withdrawal without an agreement. In this scenario, EU treaties and legal acts would cease to apply to the UK immediately.