The Chief Minister Howard Quayle MHK spoke, this morning, with the Parliamentary Undersecretary of State for Exiting the EU, Robin Walker MP, to discuss the successful conclusion of the Withdrawal Agreement and the Political Declaration by the Prime Minister in Brussels on Sunday.
The Minister reiterated that the UK Government has negotiated the Withdrawal Agreement on behalf of the whole UK and the Crown Dependencies. This means that the Isle of Man and the other Crown Dependencies are included in the Withdrawal Agreement and the Implementation Period, providing Isle of Man businesses and citizens with certainty.
On the future relationship with the EU outlined in the Political Declaration, the Prime Minister has been clear that the UK will negotiate on behalf of all territories for whose external relations the UK is responsible. Minister Walker underlined that the UK Government will be seeking arrangements for the Crown Dependencies that take account of their existing relationships with the EU and strike a proportionate balance of rights and responsibilities. This future relationship will respect the Island’s constitutional relationship with the UK and the Island’s fiscal autonomy.
The Chief Minister commented:
'The UK Government has been able to confirm that our interests have been protected, and that we have been included within the Withdrawal Agreement and Implementation Period, to the limited extent of our current Protocol 3 relationship. We now await the result of the parliamentary debate and vote in the UK with great interest.'
'The UK has also committed to ensuring that they will negotiate on our behalf in discussions with the EU on the future relationship, and that these discussions will respect our constitutional position, as well as taking account of our existing relationship with the EU.
'There is still some way to go, and we will continue to work closely with the UK to ensure we can achieve a new relationship which is proportionate, and balances our rights against our responsibilities. For now, this work includes continuing to prepare for the possibility that there is no deal, and that the UK leaves without any arrangements in place in March next year.'