UK Government statement on the meeting of the Partnership Council: 9 June 2021

9 Jun 2021 01:54 PM

UK Government statement on the meeting of the Partnership Council.

The United Kingdom and the European Union yesterday held the first meeting of the Partnership Council in London. The meeting took place in a constructive atmosphere and marks an important milestone in our new relationship as friendly trading partners and sovereign equals.

We welcomed the final ratification of the Trade and Cooperation Agreement and highlighted the importance of this Agreement in building a mutually beneficial and stable relationship. We agreed an indicative timetable for upcoming meetings of the various Joint Committees established under the Agreement, and encouraged continuing work on the establishment of the Parliamentary Partnership Assembly and the Civil Society Forum.

We discussed the implementation of the Agreement in the areas of sanitary and phytosanitary measures and customs, fisheries, law enforcement and judicial cooperation, and the UK’s participation in Union programmes. Long term visa fees were also discussed, although the UK does not consider this formally a matter covered by the Agreement.

As regards the substance, the UK emphasised the need to continue and deepen our close cooperation on customs and on sanitary and phytosanitary measures and encouraged pragmatism, on both sides, to minimise the barriers to trade being faced. On fisheries, the UK made clear that it will exercise regulatory autonomy within its waters, while continuing to take pragmatic steps to ease the transition to the new arrangements for EU fishermen including on licences. The UK noted the good progress in the area of law enforcement generally, but that further steps were needed before all Member States were able to deliver on the commitments in the Agreement. The UK encouraged swift progress on the UK’s association to Horizon, Euratom and Copernicus. The UK also raised issues faced by touring performers and noted the ongoing work with Member States to try to resolve these issues.

The co-chairs agreed to remain in regular contact.