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25 November 2018

European Council (Art. 50) conclusions, 25 November 2018

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EU27 leaders endorsed the Brexit withdrawal agreement, as presented by the negotiators of the EU and the UK, and approved the political declaration on future EU-UK relations, which accompanies and is referred to in the withdrawal agreement.

1. The European Council endorsed the Agreement on the withdrawal of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland from the European Union and the European Atomic Energy Community. On this basis, the European Council invites the Commission, the European Parliament and the Council to take the necessary steps to ensure that the agreement can enter into force on 30 March 2019, so as to provide for an orderly withdrawal.

2. The European Council approves the Political Declaration setting out the framework for the future relationship between the European Union and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. The European Council restates the Union's determination to have as close as possible a partnership with the United Kingdom in the future in line with the Political Declaration. The Union's approach will continue to be defined by the overall positions and principles set out in the previously agreed European Council's guidelines. The European Council will remain permanently seized of the matter.

3. The European Council thanks Michel Barnier for his tireless efforts as the Union's chief negotiator and for his contribution to maintaining the unity among EU27 Member States throughout the negotiations on the withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union.

European Council (Art. 50) conclusions, 25 November 2018

Invitation letter by President Donald Tusk to the members of the European Council (Art. 50) ahead of their special meeting on 25 November 2018

[...]The EU negotiator has achieved these objectives. The Withdrawal Agreement ensures that the rights of our citizens are fully protected, the peace process in Northern Ireland should not be affected, the UK will continue its payments to the EU budget during the transition period and legal certainty will be secured. Our negotiator has thereby managed to reduce the risks and losses resulting from the United Kingdom's withdrawal from the European Union.

The Political Declaration sets the direction as regards the future relations. We intend to work resolutely towards building the best possible relationship with the UK after Brexit, as friends and partners. And we will have around two years to work out and agree a precise framework for such cooperation. And if, in spite of our best efforts, additional time is needed to negotiate the future relationship, an extension of the transition period by up to two years will be possible.

During these negotiations, no-one wanted to defeat anyone. We were all looking for a good and fair agreement. And I believe that we have finally found the best possible compromise. Given all of the above, I will recommend that on Sunday we approve the outcome of the Brexit negotiations. And although no-one will have reasons to be happy on that day, there is one thing I would like to stress: at this critical time, the EU27 has passed the test of unity and solidarity. [...]

Full invitation letter

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TheCityUK responds to EU leaders’ approval of the Brexit deal

© European Council

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