- The European Council President has suggested a 12-month extension for the UK to decide on a Brexit withdrawal agreement
- This plan will be discussed among EU leaders next week
On April 4, 2019, news broke that the House of Commons in the UK had passed a vote to request an extension of the Brexit deadline. This came after the Prime Minister Theresa May had sat down with opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn to discuss some compromise after parliament repeatedly declined all the deals brought before them.
The major reason a deadline extension was needed was to make sure that a deal could be passed in parliament to avoid a situation where the UK was forced to leave without a deal, something neither side wanted. The narrative surrounding the story was that a few weeks or a month or so would be added to the deadline.
Now, it seems the UK could have much more time on their hands as it has been reported on April 5, 2019, that European Council President Donald Tusk is looking to give the UK a whole year of a flexible extension to their deadline.
A Long Way to Go
While word of this plan is floating around, it isn’t a done deal as it will need to be agreed upon by EU leaders at a summit next week.
As part of the proposed deal, the UK will be able to leave the EU earlier if they are able to reach a deal before the new deadline. The current deadline is April 12, 2019, and it is believed that Theresa May will be writing to ask for an extension. In the meantime, both the Torys and Labour are engaging in what has been called ‘productive’ talks.
Should these talks fail, however, Attorney General Geoffrey Cox has told the press that the delay would be a long one. To avoid a drawn-out process, May and Corbyn would need to agree on a deal that can be successfully presented to parliament, especially in light of the multiple rejections that have met previous plans. If no agreement can be reached, multiple options will be given to parliament.
Donald Tusk, however, is proposing a “flextension” which will give the UK a 12-month time frame to figure out a withdrawal agreement and leave once one is decided upon.