A historic deal on the UK’s future trading and security relationship with the European Union has been struck on Christmas Eve, a week before the end of the Brexit transition period.
The European Commission president Von der Leyen said at a press conference shorty after the deal was sealed: “We have finally found an agreement. It was a long and winding road, but we have got a good deal to show for it.”
She added that it is “fair” and “balanced”, and it was “right and responsible” for the two sides to pursue it.
It was worth fighting for this deal.
We now have a fair & balanced agreement with the UK. It will protect our EU interests, ensure fair competition & provide predictability for our fishing communities.
Europe is now moving on. https://t.co/77jrNknlu3
— Ursula von der Leyen (@vonderleyen) December 24, 2020
“For the first time since 1973 we will be an independent coastal state with full control of our fishing waters,” British PM Boris Johnson said.
'For the first time since 1973 we will be an independent coastal state with full control of our fishing waters.'
— ITV News (@itvnews) December 24, 2020
‘A statement from Downing Street said that everything the British public was promised during the 2016 referendum and last year’s general election is delivered by this deal.
“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,” the statement added.
As the UK leaves the single market and customs union on 31 December, new arrangements allowing for tariff-free trade in goods and close police and judicial cooperation will come into force.
The trade agreement – running to 2,000 pages – is unprecedented in scope, containing provisions on subjects varying from civil nuclear cooperation and energy interconnections to fishing and aviation.