Brexit: EU reveals no-deal plans and warns of flight, freight and financial havoc

December 19, 2018
The European Commission says it has started to implement its preparations for a no-deal Brexit - in case the UK crashes out of the EU without a plan. It has announced temporary measures to try to reduce the impact, but says it cannot counter all the problems it expects. As PM Theresa May's proposed exit plan flounders in Parliament, both sides are preparing for the worst-case situation. The UK has allocated £2bn ($2.5bn) in funding to government departments. The European Commission's measures are designed to limit disruption in certain key areas, such as finance and transport, if Brexit goes ahead in March without a deal. "This is an exercise in damage limitation," added commissioner Valdis Dombrovskis in a news conference, saying a contingency plan was necessary "given the continued uncertainty in the UK". The commission's 14 measures cover legislation that will aim to ensure some continuity. Flights from the UK into and overflying the EU to be allowed for 12 months to ensure "basic connectivity" Hauliers to carry freight by road into the EU for a nine-month period without having to apply for permits UK financial services regulations - in a limited number of areas such as derivatives trading - to be recognised as equivalent to the EU's for one or two years The commission has also urged its 27 remaining member states to take a "generous" approach to the residency rights of UK citizens in the EU following a no-deal Brexit, "provided that this approach is reciprocated by the UK". The Commission says these measures should not compare with EU membership, or the transition period on offer in the Withdrawal Agreement - which the UK Parliament has yet to vote on.
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