The two year negotiation process will be difficult and time-consuming for both the UK and the EU. Discussions regarding the type of deal the UK and the EU will settle on have been discussed ever since the Referendum result was announced.
Since Theresa May’s announcements that (1) the UK would be leaving the Single Market as well as the EU and (2) that the UK would be better with no deal at all than entering into a bad deal, these discussions have only become more important.
It is likely that the public will call for a much more open process when it comes to the negotiation process. Many MPs believe that an open process not only with the EU but with the UK public will allow for a quicker resolution. The UK only has a two year time period under Article 50, unless otherwise agreed by the 27 member states, in which to negotiate and ratify a deal with the EU.
The deal will have detail every aspect of the current relationship including immigration, trade, security, movement as well as environmental matters and the UK’s input of future decision of the EU.
The UK wishes to remain on good terms with the EU and ultimately hopes to continue the position as to free trade between the UK and the 27 member states however it is unlikely that the EU will allow this without maintaining the position as to free movement (a major contributing issue in regards to the Referendum result in June 2016).
It is good to remember however that, although the UK will need to rely on trading with the EU to maintain their economic position, the EU member states require the same. Many EU companies will rely on a trade deal with the UK to maintain their position and many more will rely on the UK’s renowned business services sector to continue to provide services to them.
Another worry for the UK is whether the government will do the unthinkable and leave the EU without securing a trade deal.
There have, recently, been suggestions that the government would have rather left the EU with no deal at all rather than take on a bad deal. The government have since come out and said that this does not mean the UK will refuse all deals but that the UK signing up to a bad deal would not be in its best interests and that the UK and EU should work together to get the best deal for both parties.
The idea that there would be no deal at the end of the two year period - leaving the UK with no access to the EU or to ability to trade with the EU – is a worrying position to think about.
Businesses would face custom charges and tariffs, as a result of having to operate under and comply with the World Trade Organisation rules, passing down to the public who would see a major increase in produce, many companies would seriously consider moving jobs and operations outside of the UK and an NHS weakened even further through the loss of thousands and qualified doctors and nurses.
Should there be no deal, a version of the Great Repeal Bill would have to be implemented to protect the legal position of UK and negotiations would have to continue. In order for the regulations currently in force to remain, the Great Repeal Bill which aims to bring into national law all of the current EU law at the point of the UK’s exit from the EU. This is in order to maintain the UK’s position as on par with the EU’s to ensure that trade can continue.
This is seemingly a last resort however it indicates the uncertain position that the UK will find itself in after the triggering of Article 50.