Remainers dealt crushing blow: EU expert outlines why Brexit extension ‘really difficult’

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Professor Catherine Barnard told the UK in a Changing Europe that Britain has the option to decide on an extension of the transition period with the EU before July 1. Professor Barnard added that after July 1 it will be really difficult legally for the UK to negotiate an extension to the Brexit transition period if they later decide more time is needed. 

Professor Barnard said: “It is difficult, legally it is really difficult.

“They have got to decide on a single extension of up to one or two years that has got to be done by July 1.

“Let’s assume that nothing happens at that moment and we get to October and more time is required.

“Then how do we secure an extension to the transition?”

She added: “The more ambitious the trade deal is the more likely it is to be classed as a mixed agreement.

“That means it has got to be signed off by the EU, EU Parliament and also all of the national and regional parliaments.

“That is going to take some time and will not be done overnight.”

Earlier this month Michael Gove revealed staying in the European Union for another year could cost the UK between £20billion gross and £10billion net.

The Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster outlined the cost to the UK if the Brexit transition period is extended during the Lords’ European Union committee.

Lord Lamont asked: “Can you be more precisely about what the costs of an extension to the transition period would be?”

Mr Gove replied: “Yes, for every year continued membership the additional cost would be between £20billion gross and £10billion net.

“One additional complicating factor is that the current multi-annual framework of the EU ends at the end of this calendar year.

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“There would be a new MFF.

“It would be decided by the EU 27 and we would not have a voice in that process.

“We would find that even the limited say we had in the setting of the MFF when we were a member of the EU would have gone.

“So, we can’t know preciously what bill we may be saddled with were we to agree to another year of continued transition.”

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