The European Parliament has now finally consented to the Council concluding the Trade and Cooperation Agreement with the United Kingdom clearing the way for its definitive conclusion on 30 April 2021, the day on which the extended period of provisional application will expire.

The consent of the European Parliament was never really in doubt but what is interesting is the fact that it has extracted from the Commission and the Council commitments on involving the Parliament in the management of relations with the United Kingdom.

A little noticed statement from the Commission contains a long list of promises by the Commission to “adequately involve” the Parliament at an early stage of a series of processes ranging from the termination or amendment of the Agreement or parts thereof to the investigation of complaints for breaches of the Agreement and adoption of retaliatory or rebalancing measures to the selection of arbitrators and experts to adjudicate those disputes.

This represents a significant improvement of the powers of control granted by Article 218(10) of the Treaty and is to be officialised in an Interinstitutional Agreement.

Eric White
Eric White
+32 2 518 1826