In a previous article entitled “Brexit: Troubled negotiations failed. What next?”, I mentioned the forthcoming adoption of several Ordinances in furtherance of the so-called Enabling Law of January 19, 2019 that authorized the French Government “to take measures by way of Ordinances to prepare for the United Kingdom's withdrawal from the European Union”. Since then, six Ordinances were signed between January 23 and February 13, 2019 which underline the urgency and the dangers of a no-deal Brexit, the consequences of which have not be sufficiently anticipated upstream.
The fast-track procedure launched by the French Government even before the vote of the British Parliament that rejected the withdrawal agreement negotiated between the United Kingdom and the European Union made it possible to adopt within an extremely short timeframe these first Ordinances intended to address the consequences of a no-deal Brexit.
We are only two months ahead of the expiry of the two-year timeframe provided for by Article 50 of the Treaty on the European Union that will entail the automatic exit of the United Kingdom from the European Union, unless if this timeframe is extended or if an agreement on a transition period is reached. Following the UK Parliament’s rejection of the withdrawal agreement concluded in Brussels on November 25, 2018, a no-deal Brexit seems less and less avoidable.
In a Law dated January 19, 2019 and published in the Official Journal on January 20, 2019, the French Parliament has just authorized the Government “to take measures by way of Ordinances to prepare for the United Kingdom's withdrawal from the European Union.”
Since the entry into force of Regulation 1/2003 on May 1, 2014, the National Competition Authorities (“NCAs”) of the 27 Member States and the European Commission form the “European Competition Network” which aims at ensuring the effective enforcement of Articles 101 and 102 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union.
15 years after entry into force of this Regulation, it appeared necessary to extend it in order to standardize the statuses of the NCAs for the purpose of unifying the enforcement of EU competition law. In this context, Directive 2019/1 to empower the competition authorities of the Member States to be more effective enforcers and to ensure the proper functioning of the internal market was published on December 18, 2018.
On March 6, 2018, the Grand Chamber of the Court of Justice of the European Union issued a judgment stating that the UNCITRAL arbitration clause included in a Bilateral Investment Treaty that establishes a mechanism for settling disputes between an investor and an EU Member State is incompatible with EU law.
The United Kingdom is the first Member of the European Union that used the withdrawal option provided for under Article 50 that was introduced in the Treaty on European Union by the Lisbon Treaty. This unexpected withdrawal raises major challenges that no one seems to have actually anticipated.
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