Prime Minister Boris Johnson announces historic trade deal
I'm delighted that this historic future trade agreement between the UK and the EU has been reached. I was elected to Parliament on a mandate to deliver Brexit and, having passed the Withdrawal Agreement Act last December, agreeing a trade deal completes the process of establishing our new relationship as an independent nation.
The voters of Sheffield, Barnsley and the wider UK voted in 2016 and 2019 to leave the EU and take back control of our money, our borders, and our laws. That is what this new deal delivers, and I know that people will be pleased that we have achieved this outcome.
This is the biggest deal that has been negotiated by either side and extends beyond just trade to ensure future cooperation that is in the interests of both the UK and the EU. This will include work on scientific innovation, security, and tackling climate change, amongst many others. It is a historic achievement for the Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, and our entire negotiating team.
Our new agreement represents a fantastic opportunity for citizens and businesses to continue tariff and quota free trade with the EU, whilst also allowing us to broaden our horizons to the entire globe and forge our own path in deciding what is best for our country.
This has been a long and at times difficult process for us as a country. It is almost four and a half years to the day since we voted to leave the EU, and in that time a lot of debate has taken place and a lot of things have changed. I hope that we will be able now to come together in the spirit of friendship and neighbourly co-operation, and embrace new opportunities to build a better future for us all as an independent nation.
The agreement secured today:
- Is based on international law, not EU law. There is no role for the European Court of Justice and no requirements for the UK to continue to follow EU law. We will be a truly independent country, with our sovereign Parliament in full control of the laws that we live by.
- is the first free trade agreement based on zero tariffs and zero quotas that the EU has ever agreed and it's fantastic news for families and businesses in every part of the UK. Businesses will be able to continue to trade smoothly and people will be able to continue to buy goods from Europe tariff-free.
- secures on our pledge to protect and boost our economy and provides for continued market access across a broad scope of key service sectors, including professional and business services, supporting new and continued investment between businesses. It also means that business travellers will be able to easily move between the EU and the UK for short term visits and the agreement on financial services ensures financial stability and consumer protection.
- delivers on our commitment to maintaining high labour, environment and climate standards without giving the EU any say over our rules.
- allows us to introduce our own modern subsidy system so that we can better support businesses to grow and thrive, in a way that best suits the interests of UK industries. We will be outside the EU State Aid regime.
- supports this Government's primary objective of prioritising the safety and security of its citizens. It offers streamlined co-operation on law enforcement, ensuring we continue to effectively tackle serious organised crime and counter terrorism, protecting the public, and bringing criminals to justice. It also provides for future co-operation between the UK and EU on emerging security challenges, such as cyber and health security, including continuing to work together on tackling the spread of COVID-19.
- recognises UK sovereignty over our fishing waters and puts us in a position to rebuild our fishing fleet and increase quotas, overturning the inequity that British fishermen have faced for over four decades. By the end of the transition we will have full control of our waters and the amount of fish available to UK fishermen will have risen from half to two-thirds.
- provides for the UK's participation in certain EU programmes, furthering our commitment to making the UK a science and research superpower and fulfilling our manifesto commitment to participate in the Horizon Europe programme, but also the Euratom Research and Training programme, and the space programme, Copernicus.
- delivers for our citizens, making our daily lives easier. It includes arrangements for airlines and hauliers that provides them with certainty, and gives people the ability to travel to and from the EU easily for work and holidays; a social security agreement that has practical benefits for UK citizens including accessing healthcare when travelling in the EU; and agreements on energy which will benefit consumers by helping to keep prices down.
- delivers for the entire UK, protecting the integrity of our internal market and Northern Ireland's place within it.