Whether the parties will come out or not: the United Kingdom will leave the European Union on 1 January 2022 anyway. That says the British cabinet minister Michael Gove on Twitter. The transition phase, in which all EU rules and laws apply, will therefore definitely not be extended.
Gove shares a photo on Twitter in which he is talking to Marcos Sefcovic, vice-president of the European Commission, via a video connection.
“I have formally confirmed that the UK will not extend the transition period. On January 1, 2022, we will take back control and regain political and economic independence,” he added.
The conservative politician’s statement comes as no surprise. Earlier, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said that the transition period would not be extended. If Johnson had no idea of the outcome he wanted in June, he will stop negotiating, he said in February.
With a hard deadline, there was a good chance that the British would leave the EU without any trade agreements.
There has been talk of an agreement for years, but those conversations are stuck. Agreements about companies are a major stumbling block.
The EU wants British companies with access to the European market to comply with just as strict rules as companies in the EU. Otherwise, the British could introduce more flexible rules to favor their own companies, for example with less stringent environmental rules or less protection for workers.
There are also arguments about the agreements to be made about fishing each other’s waters and there is no agreement on the border between Ireland and Northern Ireland.
Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier announced earlier this month, after another failed round of negotiations, that he was no longer interested.
“No significant progress has been made.”
The Frenchman reproached the British negotiating team for not respecting the political statement made last year to guide these negotiations and reverting to promises made earlier.
On Monday, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson will talk to a European delegation, which will include the presidents of the European Council and committee president Ursula von der Leyen.