The European Commission has presented a package of 14 contingency plans in various sectors, including financial services and air transport, to avoid the most serious damage to the EU from an eventual Brexit without agreement, although these measures will not be applied in the future. territory of Gibraltar.
Regarding the air sector, a regulation is proposed to guarantee for twelve months the provision of certain air services between the United Kingdom and the EU and another to extend the validity of some licenses for aviation security for nine months.
The emergency measures will also cover other areas such as customs and climate policy and have been chosen because Brussels considers that the sectors in which the lack of a divorce agreement between the United Kingdom and the EU would have “serious disorders” for citizens and community businesses.
Therefore, the Community Executive considers that it is “essential and urgent” that measures be taken quickly, for which he has urged the Council and the European Parliament to take appropriate action to allow the plans to enter into force on 29 September. March 2019, when the disconnection occurs, if the Brexit agreement has been frustrated by then.
However, the community services have reminded that with the divorce, the community law will not only cease to apply in the United Kingdom, but also in Gibraltar, so the contingency measures “will not apply in Gibraltar”.
The European Union applies the provisions of its Treaties in the Rock to the extent that it considers it a “European territory whose external relations are assumed by a Member State”, so that with the departure from the United Kingdom it will no longer be under the umbrella of Member State and the Treaties will not apply to it.
The European Union and the United Kingdom have negotiated a Retreat Treaty which aims to guarantee an orderly divorce, but to be effective it needs to be ratified by the European and British Parliaments.
The House of Commons will vote on the legal text in the week of January 14, announced the British Prime Minister, Theresa May, who has already postponed the vote once for fear that the deputies will overthrow the pact and produce a chaotic Brexit .
Given the risk of this abrupt departure, the Community Executive has been working for months on contingency plans for those issues that fall within its competences and has urged the member states to also prepare emergency plans for matters under their national sovereignty.
ATTENUATING THE CONSEQUENCES OF A DEPARTURE WITHOUT AGREEMENT
In any case, the initiatives that are prepared should serve to “lessen the consequences” of a UK exit without an agreement, but that “in no case will they compensate” the conditions of a negotiated separation “nor reproduce the advantages” of the relations within of the EU, said the vice president of the Commission responsible for the Euro, Valdis Dombrovskis, at a press conference in Brussels.
They will also apply only in areas where it is “absolutely necessary to safeguard” the “vital” interests of the European Union. Its application will be “temporary”, with a “limited” field of action and will be adopted “unilaterally” by the European Union, the EU executive said in a statement.
As an example of the measures proposed by Brussels, Dombrovskis has referred to the area of financial services, where they have identified some risks for financial stability, especially as regards the liquidation of derivatives.
“We ask for a temporary one-year equivalency decision in this area, allowing market players to adjust their business models,” said the community vice president.
“We have a two-year equivalency decision on central securities depositories (CDS) and two regulatory standards for a smoother transition of UK contracts to the EU,” he added.