State Secretary Metelko-Zgombić presents to parliament results of EU-UK post-Brexit partnership talks

State Secretary for Europe Andreja Metelko-Zgombić on Friday presented to the Croatian Parliament the results of negotiations between the EU and the UK on partnership and cooperation after 1 January 2021. The EU-UK relations are thereafter regulated by three separate agreements: the Agreement on Trade and Cooperation, the Agreement on Information Security and the Agreement on Nuclear Energy.

The EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement also contains chapters on cooperation in matters of internal security, justice and coordination of social security systems, and is the most comprehensive free trade agreement the EU has with a third country. The EU-UK Security of Information Agreement was signed to enable a secure exchange of classified information between the EU institutions and the UK, while the Nuclear Energy Agreement allows for continued cooperation in safe and peaceful uses of nuclear energy in accordance with international standards.

“These three agreements are being provisionally implemented since 1 January 2021. This ensures that the EU and the UK, after the end of the transition period on 31 December 2020, have a legal basis for the continuation of orderly relations. The agreements will come into force once translations into all official EU languages are completed and certified, and in the case of the Information Security Agreement, once it is approved by the European Parliament,” Metelko-Zgombić explained.

She also informed the Parliament about the course of the EU-UK negotiations – from the official opening during Croatia’s EU presidency on 25 February 2020 until the reaching of agreement on 24 December 2020. “The Croatian EU presidency might be remembered as a time when one member state left the Union, but it was done in an orderly fashion, with conditions clearly defined by the EU-UK Withdrawal Agreement, along with the opening of negotiations on post-Brexit contractual relations,” said the state secretary.