18 November 2019
During October 2019, the European Union (EU) and the UK agreed to a flexible extension relating to the UK’s exit from the EU to 31 January 2020.
As this is a flexible extension, it means that the UK could possibly leave at any point between now and the end of January 2020. It also means that the UK will remain a full member of EU VAT regime, Customs Union and Single Market up until either they decide to leave or the 31 January 2020 deadline.
In addition to this extension, the UK has also stated that a general election will take place on 12 December 2019. This will determine the next party to take power in the country and could go some way to breaking the parliamentary deadlock which is currently delaying the passing of an EU departure agreement.
New leave deal agreed in principle between the EU and the UK
Prior to this extension, the EU and UK Prime Minister agreed on the terms of a withdrawal deal for the UK to leave the EU.
This new withdrawal agreement would leave Northern Ireland somewhat tied to the EU on trade of goods for VAT and customs purposes, and as a result, would mean they could take advantage of dual free access to both markets. However, for the rest of the UK, it would mean that they would leave the EU VAT and customs regime entirely. Please click here for full detail of this new arrangement.
The agreement still needs to be agreed by the UK parliament and if accepted will be adopted into UK legislation prior to the January 2020 Brexit deadline.