The House of Lords is due to consider the Taxation (Post-transition Period) Bill on 16 December 2020. The Lords is debarred from amending it as it is a supply bill. The bill would implement customs, VAT and excise obligations arising under the Northern Ireland Protocol.
Catch up on Brexit developments with a selection of articles you may have missed from October and November 2020. This month includes a look at how the financial and pharmaceutical sectors will be impacted by Brexit.
On Thursday 10 December 2020, the House of Lords will debate regulations made by the Secretary of State using powers in the Immigration and Social Security Co-ordination (EU Withdrawal) Act 2020. The regulations make a series of changes which the Government describe as necessary following the ending of freedom of movement. The changes will come into force at the end of the transition period on 31 December 2020.
The Ozone Depleting Substances and Fluorinated Greenhouse Gases (Amendment etc.) (EU Exit) Regulations 2020 would implement the Northern Ireland protocol specifically in relation to restricting the use of ozone depleting substances (ODS) and fluorinated greenhouse gases (F gases). It would mean that EU law on these issues would apply to Northern Ireland following the transition period. It would also implement controls on the movement of relevant gases, substances and equipment between Northern Ireland and Great Britain.
On 8 December 2020, the House of Lords will debate government proposals to further amend the rules that will govern the domestic regime for regulating the chemicals industry following the end of the Brexit transition period. Concerns have been raised regarding the administration of this new system and its impact on UK businesses. This article summarises the new draft regulations and the reaction to the Government’s proposals.
The draft Human Medicines (Amendment etc.) (EU Exit) Regulations 2020 and the draft Medical Devices (Amendment etc.) (EU Exit) Regulations 2020 seek to amend how clinical trials, medicines and medical devices will be regulated in both Great Britain and Northern Ireland after 31 December 2020, whilst taking into account the Northern Ireland Protocol. Under the Protocol, trade in goods between Northern Ireland and Ireland, and between Northern Ireland and EU Member States, will continue unaffected.
The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak, delivered a spending review statement on 25 November 2020. The Government said the review’s priorities were “to support the Government’s response to Covid-19, invest in the UK’s recovery and deliver on promises to the British people”. Alongside the spending review, the Office for Budget Responsibility set out its latest forecasts for the economy and for the public finances.
In 2021, the UK will no longer be subject to EU state aid policy. The UK will follow World Trade Organisation (WTO) rules and the Government will consult on whether to go beyond them. The Government has laid draft regulations to disapply state aid provisions from retained EU law. This article looks at the background on state aid, including its relevance to the Northern Ireland Protocol and the future relationship negotiations with the EU.
The Conflict Minerals (Compliance) (Northern Ireland) (EU Exit) Regulations 2020 would implement EU regulation 2017/821 in Northern Ireland from 1 January 2021. This regulation sets out the obligations placed on EU importers of certain minerals originating from conflict-affected and high-risk areas.
The draft Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland (Democratic Consent Process) (EU Exit) Regulations 2020 would implement the mechanism for obtaining democratic consent in Northern Ireland to the continued application of articles 5 to 10 of the Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland to the withdrawal agreement.
In the United Kingdom Internal Market Bill, the Government is seeking to ensure unfettered access to the UK internal market for “qualifying Northern Ireland goods”. On 30 November 2020, the House of Lords is due to debate the draft Definition of Qualifying Northern Ireland Goods (EU Exit) Regulations 2020. They contain the definition of “qualifying Northern Ireland goods” that will apply to the bill. This article explains the background to the regulations, and why the Government also intends to introduce further legislation in this area.
Medicinal and agrochemical products can be granted a Supplementary Protection Certificate, an intellectual property right associated with patents, to provide up to five years of additional rights and protections once their patents have expired. In order to apply for an SPC, a product must receive approval to be sold on the UK market. Under the Northern Ireland/Ireland Protocol, products to be sold in Northern Ireland must obtain approval under EU law, whilst products to be sold in the rest of the UK will obtain approval under UK law. Currently, this marketing authorisation is only given on a UK-wide basis. This regulation amends the market authorisation process to enable authorisations to be granted for the Northern Ireland market only and for the Great Britain market only.
The regulation of product safety, and weights and measures, is based on EU law. The European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018 brings this EU law into UK statute, so that it will continue to have effect after the end of the transition period. Amendments since have made to enable this framework to operate smoothly in the UK, and added provisions such as a UK conformity mark. This article looks at a further statutory instrument that amends retained EU law in the area, particularly in light of the Northern Ireland Protocol.
The European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018 provides the UK Supreme Court and the High Court of Justiciary in Scotland with the power to depart from retained EU case law after the end of the transition period. Draft regulations, introduced by the Government in October 2020, seek to extend this power to the Court of Appeal and other equivalent courts and tribunals. This article looks at the detail of the regulations and recent scrutiny that has taken place.