The government`s non-agreed impact assessment published on 26 February indicated that it was “urgently studying” the emergency options for which the talks were not in place, including interim enforcement and transition mechanisms (e.g. B Memorandums of Understanding) to implement agreements on the day of withdrawal. To stop in these areas, Britain needs not only external agreements, but also national regulators to negotiate and manage them. For example, if the Brexit talks are about a clear separation from EU regulators, it requires the regeneration of a UK nuclear material protection capability currently managed by Euratom, or the certification and maintenance of pilot parts or licences, all at a potentially break-in speed. The UK government is working on new deals that will replace EU trade deals after Brexit. For obvious reasons, this could prompt the UK to provide a better service deal than South Korea. There is a possible “exit clause” which states that the MFN obligation does not apply if the subsequent free trade agreement “imposes a significantly higher level of obligation.” However, this could raise questions about the UK`s sovereignty, as this may require closer relations with the EU than would be politically acceptable in the light of the withdrawal vote. A more detailed discussion on the MFN clauses in EU trade agreements can be found in this document from the British Trade Policy Observatory. Other agreements are less material, at least for the United Kingdom: the protection of swordfish in Chile or the “procedural rules of the International Rubber Study Group”. Such interests are immersive from what is at stake with Brexit, but at the end of the day, budgetary management must be done. During the transitional period of Brexit, the withdrawal agreement obliges the UK to meet its obligations under international agreements (including trade agreements) negotiated by the EU. As a general rule, the contracting parties to these agreements were not required to agree, although in practice a considerable number chose to do so or expressed a formal willingness to incorporate the existing provisions into the transition (see this briefing).
Parties to free trade agreements generally recognize that the movement of people is necessary to facilitate trade, especially for service companies – but they are often reluctant to commit to the requirements of their own national immigration rules. On the basis of draft texts published by the UK and the EU, the proposed free trade agreement between the EU and the UK should not be an exception to this general rule. This means that business travel between the UK and the EU should have an additional bureaucracy from 1 January 2021, even if there is an agreement. Sweden, Austria and Portugal joined the EEC and subsequently withdrew from EFTA, although they maintained their free trade relations with EFTA countries as a result of bilateral free trade agreements between the EEC and other EFTA countries.