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UK's PM Johnson formally signs Brexit withdrawal deal

posted onJanuary 24, 2020

United Kingdom Prime Minister Boris Johnson signed Britain’s delayed and disputed Brexit deal with the EU on Friday. Under the Withdrawal Agreement, Britain will finally leaving the 28-nation bloc on January 31, more than three and a half years after voters narrowly opted to do so in a June 2016 referendum.

Earlier in the day, Presidents of the European Commission and the European Council Ursula von der Leyen and Charles Michel signed the Brexit agreement and sent it to the European Parliament for ratification next week.

Von der Leyen tweeted: “Charles Michel and I have just signed the agreement on the withdrawal of the UK from the EU, opening the way for its ratification by the European parliament.” 

Yesterday, UK's House of Commons Deputy Speaker Nigel Evans announced that the Withdrawal Agreement Act had received royal assent from Queen Elizabeth II, the final formality in its legislative journey, after the House of Lords voted in favour of the legislation the day before.

“Today I have signed the Withdrawal Agreement for the UK to leave the EU on January 31st, honouring the democratic mandate of the British people. This signature heralds a new chapter in our nation’s history” Johnson said on Twitter. 

Despite the island country leaving the Johnson stated he wants good future relationships between the two sides and that he is optimistic about the post-Brexit trade deal.

In February, Britain and the EU will begin negotiations on their future ties, racing to strike new relationships for trade, security and a host of other areas by the end of 2020. 

For 11 months, the UK will still follow all the EU's rules and regulations, it will remain in the single market and the customs union, and the free movement of people will continue. The challenge for the government will be to get all its new rules and policies in place by the end of this year.

With reporting by news agencies