Brexit – News and Updates
Brexit will affect every single one of us. News stories and updates will be posted here.
Britains time in the EU is running out
17th October – Brexit: ‘Expectations low’ as PM heads to Brussels
Theresa May is heading to Brussels to speak to EU leaders as she battles to keep hopes of a Brexit deal alive.
Expectations of a breakthrough are low, with talks deadlocked over the Irish border issue.
EU leaders say it is up to the UK prime minister to come up with fresh ideas to solve it.
Mrs May is sticking to the plan she has already set out – but there is speculation the post-Brexit transition period could be extended.
This European Council meeting was meant to be the occasion when the remaining 27 EU member states gave the green light for a special summit in November to finalise the terms of Britain’s withdrawal from the EU. Read more here on the BBC website
11th October – Kent motorway to shut as work begins on possible post-Brexit lorry park
A Kent motorway is undergoing a series of closures as work begins on turning it into a potential lorry park to deal with the possible impact of a no-deal Brexit.
In the most significant practical work yet to prepare for the consequences of the UK crashing out of the EU, the M26 will be closed through the night until next week for site surveys before another set of closures in the month leading up to Christmas to install gates in the central reservation.
Work has already started on the M20 motorway, with further closures ahead, where the DfT has earmarked a 13.5-mile stretch between Maidstone and Ashford as a holding park for thousands of trucks. The four-lane southbound carriageway will be closed, while a two-lane contraflow will allow traffic to continue to the Channel.
Now it has been revealed that ministers are also planning to use the M26, a 10-mile motorway that links the M25 to the M20 in Kent starting 65 miles from Dover, to park more lorries. Read more here in the Guardian
Number two of the Brexit Ministry, Robin Walker: “We ask the EU countries to protect the British workers”
The decisive moment is imminent. With less than two weeks of the European Council – in which the loose fringes of Brexit should be tied – the number two of the Ministry for the Exit of the EU bets on Theresa May’s plan and urges Brussels to raise new and “necessary” “suggestions to be able to advance.
At what point is the possibility of a ‘no agreement’?
It’s unlikely. All parties are focused on reaching an agreement and it is our absolute objective, but it is necessary to be prepared for all possible scenarios, and the United Kingdom is. Theresa May announced after Salzburg that even if there were no agreement we would protect the rights of European citizens in our country, and we would like to see the same kind of commitment on the part of the Member Statestowards the British in their territories, it is something I have asked the Spanish authorities.
So, will there be an exit agreement for October 18?
The European Council is a good opportunity to secure an agreement, this is what we are working on and we have had weekly meetings with Brussels to achieve it. There are pending issues in which the parties do not agree, but we believe that we have a credible proposal that respects the key concern of the EU : the indivisibility of the four freedoms and the integrity of the single market. We consider the possibility of an extraordinary Council in November, but our goal is to be in October.
Last week, British Interior Minister Sajid Javid said that London was waiting for a formal rejection by Brussels of May’s plan …
There have been talks about the technical elements of Checkers, about which the EU had doubts. We believe that we have been able to answer these questions and that our proposal respects the interests of the EU. In the negotiation, there must be respect between the parties and, in order to advance together, we need new proposals from the EU.
How do you assess the attitude of Brussels at the Salzburg summit?
It is important for the entire process that we respect the red lines of each part. I can understand how important it is for the EU and its Member States to protect the integrity of the single market, something that the UK has respected in its proposals, but I think it will be good for both parties to have a clear vision of the future relationship before the end of the period. transition. In all hard negotiations there are tactics of pressure on both sides , but the important thing, as our minister for the Brexit, Dominic Raab , is to keep calm and continue negotiating, instead of going into games of making public statements against some and others.
Has there been progress in the negotiations on Gibraltar?
I have had meetings with representatives of the Spanish Government about the negotiations that are taking place in Brussels regarding Gibraltar. It is a process in which we are completely including the Gibraltarian Government. Both parties have a great economic interest in the region and we hope to reach a solution that works for all, especially in terms of the border.
What level of priority is being given to the issue of the rock in the Brexit negotiations?
The British Government assumes that it has a great responsibility on the external relations of Gibraltar, because it will leave the EU together with the United Kingdom, but as for Spain, we have not only talked about Gibraltar. The key issue is the future bilateral relationship between Madrid and London regarding the amount of investments that Spanish companies have in our country and regarding the rights of Spanish citizens, but also those of the British in Spain. One of the points that needs to be resolved bilaterally is the vote. We want to ensure that citizens of both countries outside their territory can continue to vote in local elections.
Has the question of the sovereignty of the Rock been raised?
The United Kingdom has always been very clear on this issue and we would never hold negotiations on sovereignty without the involvement of the Government of Gibraltar. In these conversations, the issue of sovereignty was not on the table. The nature of the talks held with the Spanish Government has been about future agreements that allow us to collaborate for the prosperity of all.
What message would you send to Spanish workers in Gibraltar?
There will still be differences between the United Kingdom and Spain over Gibraltar as the issue of sovereignty, but with respect to workers’ rights, both governments have a firm commitment to reach a solution that works for workers . The exit agreement contains important commitments to protect border workers, as is the case of Gibraltar. We want to cause minimal disruption at the border and that is important, also for Andalusia.
What kind of reception will the Government’s new immigration plan have, based on a system of merits?
One thing that became clear during the referendum is that the British were concerned about the freedom of movement agreements of EU citizens in the UK. People wanted to see changes in that respect and greater control of immigration. It is very important that we exercise this control in a reasonable way, but we are still a country that wants to attract people to work and this system is based on the skills of foreign workers, therefore it is not discriminatory with nationality, that is a good start. We want to reach specific agreements with partners to facilitate the freedom of movement of workers of companies that invest in the United Kingdom, such as Banco Santander, and I am sure that in the coming decades there will continue to be contributions from Spanish workers to our country. We are committed to protecting the rights of European workers in any scenario of rupture, we want to see the same on the part of the countries of the EU.
The above article has been translated from the Spanish El Mundo News, read the original article here – www.elmundo.es
If you do have a holiday booked for after the EU leave date should renew their passports as soon as possible, officials have said.
Those who don’t could be barred from entering EU countries Europe if a no deal Brexit happens. Read more HERE
September 24th – Brexit no-deal could prevent flights and even coaches travelling to the EU
Brexit has already threatened a number of travel issues for UK tourists heading to Europe after leaving the EU.
Grounded flights, additional visas and new passport rules have all caused fears in regards to a no-deal Brexit.
If the UK leaves the EU without a deal, this could also affect bus and coach operators that run between the UK and the EU.
Jason Hunter 21st September
20th September 2018 – Passport readers at Alicante Airport, in preparation for Brexit
The machinery installed at Alicante Airport in the “B gates” area. These passport readers are part of the preparations for Brexit next year. I have questioned immigration officials in the UK and Spain about the passport readers as I have a professional interest in such matters, until recent retirement I have represented clients in appeal cases before the Upper and Lower Immigration Tribunals for thirty-five years. Both the UK Home Office and their Spanish counterparts say the same thing, the new visa system has been the easiest part of the Brexit process to agree, that’s why they have been able to install the airport hardware so far in advance.
Anyone having residencia before the end of next March is unlikely to be affected as governments on both sides of the divide will not retrospectively remove rights already granted, although a word of caution would apply to pensioners settled here with residencia under the S1 system in case reciprocal health care bites the dust. That brings me to the machines at Alicante Airport. They are “day counters” for the purposes of the Schengen Visa system and will cause some degree of inconvenience for a few members of this page.
As most of you will know, Schengen visas enable non-EU citizens to enter the Schengen area on a single or multi-entry basis for a maximum of 90 days in any period of 180 days. The airport machines will be used to automatically calculate the total days spent in Spain by recording the day of entry and departure.
Here’s an example. Mr & Mrs Jones are UK residents with an apartment in Spain, In 2019 they come over to Benidorm to spend the summer from 1 June to 28 August. Under the new system that would be no problem. Their entry and departure will be recorded, but the inconvenience arises in the fact that they cannot return to the Schengen area (including Benidorm) for at least another 90 days: at the end of November. So if they planned a short break to Cyprus in October, forget it, the readers at the airport will not open the gates and they will be returned (at their expense) on the next flight to the UK.
All of this means is that any property owners or regular visitors to Benidorm without residencia will need to carefully manage their diaries in future to ensure they abide by the 90 day rule. We are not going to have the flexibility we currently have to come and go as we please, but I suppose it’s all part of “controlling our borders”.
The Spanish Government have been urging all residents to make sure all paperwork is in order before Brexit.
Spain wants a special chapter on Gibraltar in Brexit agreement
PM Pedro Sánchez will meet with EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier to push for an annex addressing cross-border workers, tax evasion and smuggling in the British territory.
Spain is working to include a specific chapter on Gibraltar in the Brexit agreement. Britain’s planned departure from the European Union in March 2019 is being viewed by Spanish authorities as a good moment to make progress on long-standing claims involving taxes, environmental issues and smuggling in the British overseas territory, which is located in southern Spain. Full story HERE
BRITS with less than six months left on their passports could be banned from travelling to Europe after Brexit, the Government fears.
More bad news if a N0 Deal Brexit is announced -Leaked documents reveal that if we leave the EU with No Deal, thousands of British holidaymakers could be kept away from the continent. continue reading here
Government sources have told Sky News that roaming charges – abolished since June 2017 after changes to EU regulation – would return if there is a “no-deal” Brexit.
Whitehall sources told Sky News the warning is expected to be released on Thursday when the government publishes its second batch of “no-deal” technical notices – although the paper has yet to be signed off. Full story HERE
What is the difference between a Soft and Hard Brexit?
A soft Brexit is usually taken to refer to one that keeps Britain closely aligned with the EU. The objective is to minimise the disruption to trade, to supply chains and to business in general that would be created by diverging from the EU’s regulations and standards, thereby reducing the cost of Brexit. In practice a soft Brexit means staying within both the EU’s single market (like Norway) and its customs union (like Turkey). Soft Brexiteers are willing to be bound by EU rules and tariffs even though Britain will lose any say in making them. They also accept the inevitable consequence that it will be hard, even impossible, for Britain to do any trade deals with third countries.
A hard Brexit rejects the whole idea of close alignment. The goal is to escape burdensome EU regulations and tariffs, so as to be able to draw up rules and customs arrangements of Britain’s own choosing. In practice a hard Brexit means leaving both the single market and the customs union. Hard Brexiteers believe that staying in either would turn Britain into a “vassal state” of the EU. They are willing to accept the short-term disruption and potentially high costs of breaking free from Brussels, because they believe that the long-term gains from better regulation and the striking of free-trade deals all round the world will do more than enough to offset them.