The Declaration on the Future Relationship between the European Union and the United Kingdom, also known as the Political Declaration, is a non-binding declaration negotiated and signed in conjunction with the binding and broader Withdrawal Agreement in the context of the Withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union (EU), colloquially known as Brexit, and the planned end of the transition period. In the event that a party fails to comply with a panel decision, the agreement provides for certain “temporary remedies”, including the imposition of financial sanctions or the suspension of concessions to any provision of the agreement or to parts of another EU-UK agreement.22 Should there be an agreement on the future relationship between the EU and the UK at that time, If successful, the EU could be allowed to suspend elements of any agreement that would otherwise benefit the UK, such as the . B lower tariffs on British products. Free movement will continue until the end of the transition period (or transposition period) and EU and UK nationals will be able to travel to the UK or Member States, as currently permitted by EU law. EU citizens living in their host country before the end of the transition have a right of permanent residence under the Withdrawal Agreement, subject to certain requirements. Under the agreement, the UK and EU27 have the discretion to require EU or UK nationals to apply for a new residence status. The NI protocol, known as the “backstop,” is supposed to be temporary and valid unless it is replaced by a future relationship agreement that the parties will seek to conclude by December 31, 2020. The Protocol foresees that the common travel area and North-South cooperation will continue to a large extent as before, as will the internal electricity market (so that some EU legislation on wholesale electricity markets will continue to apply). The text of the negotiated Withdrawal Agreement, as well as the Political Declaration on the Framework for the Future Relationship between the EU and the UK, were endorsed by EU leaders at a specially convened European Council meeting on 25 November 2018.
As regards the Irish border issue, a Northern Ireland Protocol (the “backstop”) annexed to the Agreement sets out a fallback position that will only enter into force if effective alternative arrangements cannot be demonstrated before the end of the transition period. If this happens, the UK will follow the EU`s common external tariff and Northern Ireland will retain some aspects of the single market until such a demonstration is achieved. None of the parties can unilaterally withdraw from this customs union. The aim of this backstop agreement is to avoid a “hard” border in Ireland where customs controls are necessary.  The UK has chosen to implement a system requiring EU citizens to apply for a new residency status, known as “sedentary” or “predetermined” status. It is still unclear whether each of the EU-27s will exercise its discretion under the Withdrawal Agreement to require UK residents to apply for a new residency status. .