Commenting on the EU's guidelines for negotiating the Brexit transition arrangements*, adopted today by the General Affairs Council, ETUC Confederal Secretary Esther Lynch said

"It is in the interests of working people in the EU – including the UK - for the UK to stay in the single market and customs union until a new relationship is agreed.

"It is clear this means following all EU law, to guarantee a level playing field especially on workers’ rights, and paying into the budget.

"The transition end date of 31 December 2020 seems arbitrary and potentially very damaging - especially for the UK and Ireland - if a new relationship is not agreed by then."

*The guidelines

  • include the UK remaining in the single market and customs union, and being covered by the full EU acquis, during the transition period – including changes to EU law during the transition period
  • add to existing guarantees for the transition period contained in the divorce guidelines, including to the need to avoid social, environmental and tax dumping