Started Jan 31, 2020 06:00PM UTC   •   Closed Jan 01, 2021 08:01AM UTC

  Fareed Zakaria GPS asks:

Before 1 January 2021, will the Council of the European Union request the consent of the European Parliament to conclude a European Union-United Kingdom trade agreement?

The United Kingdom exited the European Union on 31 January 2020. The Withdrawal Agreement transition period ends on 31 December 2020, though there is provision for a possible extension (Europa). If a trade deal is not concluded by the end of the transition period, there are fears that the ensuing “hard Brexit” could cause significant economic harm (BBC, Institute for Government). For more information on the EU trade negotiation process, please see (note stage #23): An example of the Council of the European Union requesting the consent of the European Parliament to conclude a trade agreement is the EU-Canada accord in 2016 (Europa).

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NOTE 28 December 2020: Provisional approval, as described under Step #22 in the link in the third sentence in the question description, does not alone constitute the Council requesting the consent of the European Parliament to conclude an EU-UK trade agreement, which is Step #23.

NOTE 12 October 2020: A qualifying trade agreement would not have to cover all trade issues to close the question. Also, an agreement governing the buying and selling of good and services would constitute a "trade agreement."<

After review of the relevant Council Decision on the signing and provisional application of the Trade and Cooperation Agreement between the European Union and the United Kingdom (, as well as other related documents (see, §3) and correspondence with the Council's press office, this question closed "No" with a closing date of 1 January 2021. For further detail on the context for this resolution, please see items §16 to §20 on the first link above.

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