Deal or no deal, the European Union expects “disruption” on January 1 – but the bloc has set out a series of measures to reduce the impact if there is no trade agreement with the UK.
The UK will leave the EU’s single market and customs union at the end of the year, and without a comprehensive deal there could be major disruption to trade.
But after crunch talks on Wednesday evening failed to make a breakthrough, Brussels has stepped up its preparations and published proposals for emergency agreements.
Here is a look at the suggestions, which are all subject to the application of fair competition rules.
Fishing rights have been one of the main stumbling blocks in the negotiations, but under the EU’s proposals its fishing boats would continue to enjoy access to UK waters during 2021.
It says that reciprocal access to each other’s waters is needed to guarantee the sustainability of fisheries and the livelihoods of those who depend upon them.
– Roads and rail
Without an agreement on the future partnership, there would be “serious disruptions” to road freight transport which could threaten public order, the commission believes.
The measures proposed would also ensure the Channel Tunnel can continue to operate after January 1 until other arrangements have been put in place.
Air traffic will be “interrupted” if there are no contingency measures in place on air transport at the end of the transition period, the commission says.
It would allow air carriers from the UK to fly across the bloc without landing, make stops for non-traffic purposes and perform scheduled and non-scheduled international passenger and cargo services between points in the United Kingdom and points in the EU.
The commission has also proposed measures to ensure various safety certificates for products can continue to be used in EU aircraft – stopping the grounding of planes.