Brexit: UK enters transition period as it officially leaves EU
The United Kingdom on Friday officially left the European Union after 47years of its association.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who held a cabinet meeting in Sunderland, discussed with members of his cabinet, a new trade deal with EU that is styled like the Canada’s free trade agreement with the EU.
Johnson also told ministers the government aimed to have 80% of the UK’s trade with other nations covered by free trade agreements within three years.
The European Parliament had given the green light, so the UK will formally leave the EU on 31 January with a withdrawal deal – and it will then go into a transition period that is scheduled to end on 31 December 2020.
During this period the UK will effectively remain in the EU’s customs union and single market – but will be outside the political institutions and there will be no British members of the European Parliament.
Meanwhile, Brexit parties were held in pubs and social clubs across the UK as the country counted down to its official departure.
Hundreds gathered in Parliament Square to celebrate Brexit, singing patriotic songs and cheering speeches from leading Brexiteers, including Nigel Farage.
The Brexit Party leader said: “Let us celebrate tonight as we have never done before.
“This is the greatest moment in the modern history of our great nation.