Brexit day: Leaked European Parliament memo on Article 50 hints it will punish UK

Leaked European Parliament response to Article 50 shows tough measures on UK

A European Parliament resolution has been leaked

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

A European Parliament resolution has hinted that EU leaders will be tough on Britain during the forthcoming Brexit negotiations.

The leaked resolution vows that Britain won't receive a free trade deal in the next two years and the transition agreement, which will allow to Britain to adjust when it formally leaves in 2019, will only last three years.

A copy of the official response, which was worked on by the EU’s chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier, was leaked ahead of the triggering of Article 50 by Theresa May today (March 29), according to The Guardian.

The resolution has 11 pages of clauses and warns that the EU will protect its financial, political and social interests. It also says that even during a transition period the UK's position will not be as good as it is currently.

In the event of a deal being agreed by the British and EU negotiators, the memo states it would need to be accepted by a qualified majority of 72% of the EU’s 27 member states, and then approved by the European Parliament by majority.

The document also says Brexit will be an “unprecedented and regrettable event, as a member state has never left the European Union before."

However it adds that the "exit must be arranged in an orderly fashion, so as not to negatively affect the European Union, its citizens and the process of European integration."

The authors suggest the future UK-EU relationship could be based on the associated membership currently held by Ukraine.

However they claim that Britain should pay costs “arising from outstanding commitments as well as make provision for off-balance sheet items, contingent liabilities and other financial costs that arise directly as a result of its withdrawal.”

The resolution is set to be voted on next Wednesday (April 5), but it is non-binding.