17 March 2017
Guest blog by Paul Eden, Senior Lecturer in Law at the University of Sussex
Now that the European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Act has received Royal Assent, the UK government is on track to meet its deadline of invoking Article 50 of the Treaty of European Union (TEU) by the end of March. Whilst it seems inevitable that the UK will indeed invoke Article 50 a key question that remains is whether we can change our minds and stop the whole process, perhaps when we are a year down the line or if there was a change in government in the UK.
In the Miller case it was common ground between the parties
‘that notice under Article 50(2)… cannot be given in qualified or conditional terms and that, once given, it cannot be withdrawn” (at ) although, as Lord Carsworth noted in his dissenting judgment, this assumption is “possibly controversial’ (at ).
This blogpost addresses the possible legal basis of any unilateral right to revoke a notification of a notice of withdrawal made in accordance with Articles 50(1) and 50(2) TEU by examining, first, the potential applicability of Article 68 of the 1969 Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties (VCLT). Secondly, the blogpost examines Article 50 TEU to determine whether the express wording implicitly excludes the right of unilateral revocation of notification of intention to withdraw from the EU. Finally, the blogpost argues that even if the other members of the EU unanimously agreed to allow the United Kingdom to revoke a notification of withdrawal, this might amount to an amendment of Article 50 TEU and present practical problems for Member States whose national law requires specific constitutional obligations at a national level for amendments to EU Treaties to take effect.
Tina Perrett March 17th, 2017
Posted In: UK- EU
2 March 2017
Giordano Mion is a Professor of Economics at the University of Sussex and fellow of the UK Trade Policy Observatory
“The people have spoken” on Brexit. The UK is leaving the EU. We now need to focus on how the UK can maintain a leading world trade position in this new scenario.
Brexit has cast a shadow over the future international position of the UK and its trading relationship with both the EU and non-EU partners. Much attention has been devoted to number crunching regarding the costs related to the UK leaving the EU. Whilst some figures look more credible than others, both before and after the vote, there has been large discrepancies – leading to confusion and an overall lack of key message.
Tina Perrett March 2nd, 2017
7 February 2017
Dr Emily Lydgate is a lecturer in Law at the University of Sussex and a fellow of the UK Trade Policy Observatory.
While the UK government White Paper on leaving the EU may be light on detail, it does suggest that securing UK environmental protections is near the bottom of its list of priorities, with a scant dedicated paragraph (8.41). Compare this with its complete section on worker’s rights; or compare to the country of Wales, which includes maintaining social and environmental standards as one of six Brexit priorities. (more…)
Tina Perrett February 7th, 2017
2 February 2017
Dr Michael Gasiorek, senior Lecturer in Economics, Managing Director of InterAnalysis, and member of UKTPO responds to the United Kingdom’s exit from and new partnership with the European Union White Paper.
My top line response to the White Paper is that it is full of wishes and hopes, but there is very little specific detail in there. No doubt this is in part because the government would argue that it does not want to give too much away so as to strengthen their hand in the negotiations, but also because some of the problems are somewhat intractable, (eg. CTA and Ireland) and finally, because the government probably does not yet know itself.
Specifically, on trade, there really is almost nothing new in the White Paper. One can exegetically examine the wording to see if there are any new insights but these are hard to find. I thought it was interesting how much work had gone into discussing dispute resolution, and wonder whether it suggests any view regarding the likelihood of future disputes? (more…)
Charlotte Humma February 2nd, 2017
Posted In: UK- EU
26 January 2017
Erika Szyszczak is a Professor of Law at the University of Sussex, Barrister and ADR Mediator at Littleton Chambers, Temple and a Fellow of theUKTPO.
It is a monumental decision for a Member State to leave the European Union, not least when it will have a major impact on the economic, political and social future, not only of the exiting Member State, but also of the global trading regime. It is thus befitting that on 24 January 2017 the Supreme Court came of age by delivering one of its most important rulings, on the nature and future shape of the UK constitution. What started as a case concerning acquired rights became a wider ranging analysis of the role of the executive vis-a-vis Parliament. As befits a monumental constitutional decision, taking place in the digital age, the responses to the ruling have been prolific and focused upon the constitutional dimension to the litigation. (more…)
Charlotte Humma January 26th, 2017
Posted In: UK- EU
17 January 2017
Dr Peter Holmes (Reader in Economics and member of the UK Trade Policy Observatory at the University of Sussex), reacts to Prime Minister Theresa May’s speech on negotiating objectives for exiting the EU.
The speech essentially confirms what we knew already, that sticking to the government’s red lines on the European Court of Justice and free movement would make joining the European Economic Area impossible and so we must leave the single market. (more…)
Katherine Davies January 17th, 2017
Posted In: UK- EU
16 January 2017
Guest blog by Katie Doherty, Policy and Operations Manager at The International Meat Trade Association
Though a significant challenge, Brexit presents an opportunity for the UK to devise its own import quota system. The current EU Tariff-rate Quote (TRQ) system is out of date and does not reflect the modern trade. For example, there are many frozen meat quotas that, as technology has developed, would be better suited as chilled meat quotas. Additionally, due to the exceedingly high EU MFN tariffs, it is generally not economically viable to import into the EU unless under a Tariff Rate Quota. (more…)
Charlotte Humma January 16th, 2017
Erika Szyszczak is a Professor of Law at the University of Sussex, Barrister and ADR Mediator at Littleton Chambers, Temple and a Fellow of the UKTPO.
EU trade policy has been cast into shadow by the sharp focus on how the UK will conduct its future trade policy. But it will be in the interests of the EU and the UK to negotiate their future trading relationship as quickly and smoothly as possible. An issue for the EU will be the question of whether it will have exclusive competence to negotiate and ratify a trade deal with the UK. Or will it be forced to acknowledge that any future agreement will be a mixed agreement requiring, and risking, ratification by all 27 Member States?
Two events at the end of 2016 have shed light on the legal and political issues facing the EU in negotiating a post-Brexit world. (more…)
Katherine Davies January 13th, 2017
Posted In: UK- EU
Alasdair Smith is an Emeritus Professor of Economics at the University of Sussex, and is a member of the UK Trade Policy Observatory.
In ‘Scotland’s place in Europe‘, published on 20 December, the Scottish Government affirms its wish that the whole UK should remain in the European single market and the EU customs union. If, however, the UK leaves the customs union and is ejected from the single market, the Scottish government wants Scotland to remain in the single market.
Commentators, by no means all of them instinctively unsympathetic to the Scottish Government’s case, have noted that the creation of a regulatory border between England and Scotland could be problematic. But the problems would not all be on the Scottish side. (more…)
Charlotte Humma December 21st, 2016
In the season of goodwill, let’s not forget our responsibilities to developing countries when we leave the EU.
A great deal of the Brexit debate has focused on the possible shape of the UK’s trade architecture after 2019. It has, however, largely ignored how others—particularly developing countries—see or will be affected by the UK’s departure from the European Union (EU). I think this is to our peril and we should, with some urgency, turn our attention to thinking about the future of our relationship with the developing world. But we need to do so remembering to shoulder our responsibilities to weaker and poorer countries, extending ‘goodwill’ to all. (more…)
Charlotte Humma December 20th, 2016
Posted In: UK - Non EU