After 11 months of dramatic negotiations, a post-Brexit trade deal between the United Kingdom and the European Union is expected to be announced today, the 24th of December.
EU and UK negotiators haggled all through the night over the major bone of contention: fishing rights in British waters.
#brexit work will continue throughout the night. Grabbing some sleep is recommended to all brexit-watchers at this point. It will hopefully be an early start tomorrow morning…
— Eric Mamer (@MamerEric) December 24, 2020
The UK exited the EU on January 31 of this year, but it is still under obligation to follow the union’s regulations, such as the Common Fisheries Policy, until the end of 2020.
Under the Common Fisheries Policy, member states have full fishing access to each other’s waters, but they have to agree on the volume of fish that can be caught from each species.
The British government has demanded a higher fishing quota share in its own waters while the EU is pushing for more access to UK waters for its member states.
The EU has made it clear that both sides have to reach a fair deal on fisheries before any free trade agreement can happen.
Without a deal, border checks and widespread taxes will be imposed on goods exchanged between the UK and the EU starting in January.
Negotiations will continue today. If an agreement is reached, both sides have until December 31 to get their parliaments to approve the Brexit deal document, which contains about 2,000 pages.