European and UK flags
27 November 2018

Brexit: a good agreement that preserves the EU’s interests and values

The 27 European Union (EU) Member States met with Theresa May on 25 November to approve the agreement on the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the European Union and the political context of our future relationship.
 
The European Council meeting on Brexit was a major summit, an expression of unity, dignity and serious endeavour: “I should like to commend the outstanding work accomplished by Michel Barnier; thanks to European unity, we have negotiated a good agreement that preserves our interests and values and prepares the way for close cooperation with the United Kingdom,” the President of the Republic stated.

With this agreement, the United Kingdom will continue to have its place in the European concert of nations, with a role it will be ready to take on and which may well evolve: “I should like to pay tribute to Theresa May, who, while ardently defending her country’s interests, has also been tireless in seeking avenues for lasting cooperation with the European Union, which is our common good”, Emmanuel Macron emphasised.

A major step forward has been taken, but we must prepare for what comes next. This is why France has obtained a clear declaration on the part of all 27 Member States which provides a framework for the next step. For the future relationship, France will be particularly vigilant on three points:
  • Ensuring a level playing field, in order to protect our businesses and with regard to the environment.
  • Concentrating efforts on preservation of fishing rights, in order to come up with an agreement maintaining access to British waters before the end of the transition period (end 2020).
  • Preserving the European Union’s decision-making autonomy.
The EU must learn from this departure of a Member State, a major partner, for the first time in the history of the construction of Europe. As the President of the Republic reminded his audience, “Europe is fragile; it cannot be taken for granted, and we must therefore defend it against all those who forget that it is a guarantee of peace, prosperity and security on our continent.”

Our Europe must be rebuilt, for Brexit tells us that it has not been able to adequately reassure and protect the peoples of each of our countries: “It is this forward-looking project to rebuild Europe which must be at the forefront of our concerns, and which we shall be discussing once again at and after the December summit. While thinking on the lessons learned from Brexit, which highlights our historical responsibility to defend, and at the same time reform, this Europe that protects us”, Emmanuel Macron added.