The dispute over the Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland The Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland to the UK Withdrawal Agreement is proving hard to implement. The European Parliament Research Service has produced a useful summary. The UK government has even suggested reneging on it but pulled back following howls of objections, not least from within the UK itself.  … Read more

Updated: The UK’s “roll-over” free trade agreements – current state of play: all major counterparties except Turkey have now been rolled over

As an EU Member State, the UK was automatically part of a number of free trade agreements with third countries, which will no longer apply to the UK once the transition period ends on 31 December 2020. To preserve the existing trade relationships with those countries and to mitigate the expected disruption of trade if … Read more

Brexit countdown: Big changes are coming on 1 January 2021 whatever happens as negotiation tensions rise

As businesses and governments around the world continue to grapple with the implications of COVID-19, Brexit is fast approaching. This time for real. Last year, as businesses awaited a potential Brexit without a deal, the difference was stark. ‘Deal’ meant entering a status quo transition period in which essentially nothing changed for business; whereas ‘no-deal’ … Read more

*Updated with link to the agreement: UK signs free trade deal with Japan

Update 28 October 2020: On 23 October 2020, the Agreement between the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and Japan for a Comprehensive Economic Partnership was signed. The full text of the agreement is available here. Please click here to see further supporting documents. On 11 September 2020, the UK signed its first … Read more

UK introduces human rights-related sanctions under post-Brexit sanctions framework

The post below was first published on our FSR and Corporate Crime blog On 6 July 2020, the United Kingdom introduced unilateral sanctions against 49 individuals and entities from Saudi Arabia, Russia, Myanmar and North Korea accused of involvement in several high profile human rights violations and abuses.The Global Human Rights Sanctions Regulations 2020 (the … Read more

European Commission releases “readiness” Communication

On 9 July 2020, the European Commission has published a Communication which provides a sector-by-sector overview of the key areas where there will be changes at the end of the transition period, regardless of whether there is an agreement on the future trade relationship or not, and sets out measures that national authorities, businesses and … Read more