Leaked EU Document Highlights Key Brexit Demands On Obligations, Migrants And Courts


European commission building - Flickr/Andrew Gustar

A leaked document, seen by the Reuters news agency, suggests that the European Union will ask Britain to continue to pay for its financial obligations, years after its departure.

The document outlines “key elements” of directives for the European Union’s chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier, which he’ll be expected to stick to when facing off with the British government at the negotiating table.

Though an exact figure for Britain’s Brexit bill isn’t states, the document does state that there would be “a schedule of annual repayments”, with two components. A “global amount” which will be set and agreed to at the negotiating table, to honour Britain’s financial commitments, and later adjustments dependent on changes to plans. The EU will demand that the bill be paid in euros, not pounds.

EU chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier

Britain will also have to accept the jurisdiction of the European Courts in any transitional agreement, the EU will demand, and would have to agree to the ECJ, or an “equivalent”, as the dispute settlement mechanism in a future free-trade deal.

There was also mention of EU migrants, similar to demands set out in the EU’s draft negotiation guidelines but with more detail. The document states that the British government should guarantee to safeguard the rights of EU citizens living in the UK, including pensions, welfare and job rights.

Rather more controversially, the EU will ask for the relatives of EU migrants to be able to settle in the UK and have the same rights as pre-Brexit freedom of movement migrants.

On the general election campaign trail this week, Theresa May pledged to reduce net immigration to less than 100,000, which was originally made by David Cameron but never achieved.

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