Article 50, Treaty of Lisbon

With BREXIT taking over the headlines, I thought it would be useful for a clear understanding of Article 50 to be laid out.

The UK will be the first country to trigger Article 50. The wording in the Lisbon Treaty is deliberately vague, giving each Member States the flexibility of how, and when to invoke it.

Once invoked, a two-year window is open. This window will be open once a new Leader has been elected, which is expected some time in October. The terms will then be set by 27 Member States who will negotiate on the following:

  • Budget Contributions
  • Expat arrangements
  • Cross-border companies
  • EU financial programmes- how these are phased out
  • Worker’s rights and protection

A New Trade Deal will then be made. A Qualified Majority must pass the terms of the negotiations in order for this to pass. At least 20 Member-States must accept this.

From the Lisbon Treaty:

Article 50

1. Any Member State may decide to withdraw from the Union in accordance with its own constitutional requirements.

2. A Member State which decides to withdraw shall notify the European Council of its intention. In the light of the guidelines provided by the European Council, the Union shall negotiate and conclude an agreement with that State, setting out the arrangements for its withdrawal, taking account of the framework for its future relationship with the Union. That agreement shall be negotiated in accordance with Article 218(3) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union. It shall be concluded on behalf of the Union by the Council, acting by a qualified majority, after obtaining the consent of the European Parliament.

3. The Treaties shall cease to apply to the State in question from the date of entry into force of the withdrawal agreement or, failing that, two years after the notification referred to in paragraph 2, unless the European Council, in agreement with the Member State concerned, unanimously decides to extend this period.

4. For the purposes of paragraphs 2 and 3, the member of the European Council or of the Council representing the withdrawing Member State shall not participate in the discussions of the European Council or Council or in decisions concerning it.

A qualified majority shall be defined in accordance with Article 238(3)(b) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union.

5. If a State which has withdrawn from the Union asks to rejoin, its request shall be subject to the procedure referred to in Article 49.

More on Article 50 here: http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2016/jun/25/article-50-brexit-debate-britain-eu
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