European Parliament approves “EU–UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement(TCA)”

What is the News?

European Parliament has approved the final ratification of the Trade and Cooperation Agreement(TCA) between the UK and the European Union.

About EU–UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement(TCA)
  • It is a free trade agreement signed in December 2020 between the United Kingdom(UK) and European Union(EU).
  • The agreement had already been ratified by the UK parliament and conditionally came into force. But so far pending the European Parliament’s approval.
Key Features of EU–UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement(TCA):

 Trade:

  • There will be no taxes on goods (tariffs) or limits on the amount that can be traded (quotas) between the UK and the EU from 1 January 2021.
  • However, some new checks will be introduced at borders, such as safety checks and customs declarations.
Services and Qualifications:
  • Businesses offering services such as banking, architecture and accounting will lose their automatic right of access to EU markets. Also, they will face some restrictions.
  • There will no longer be automatic recognition of professional qualifications for people such as doctors, chefs and architects.

 Travel:

  • UK nationals will need a visa for stays of longer than 90 days(in a 180-day period) in the EU.
Judicial Disputes:
  • There will be no role in the UK for the European Court of Justice (ECJ).
    • Note: The ECJ is the highest court in the EU.
  • Disputes that cannot be resolved between the UK and the EU. Therefore, they will be referred to an independent tribunal.

Fishing:

  • Over the next five-and-a-half years, the UK will gradually gain a greater share of the fish from its own waters.
  • The UK could choose to ban EU fishing boats from 2026. But the EU can impose taxes on British fish in response.

Data:

  • The UK will no longer have automatic access to key security databases. Instead, the UK will get access based upon request.

Education:

  • The UK will no longer participate in the Erasmus exchange programme.
    • Erasmus exchange programme is an EU scheme that helps students to study in other countries.
  • Students at universities in Northern Ireland will continue to participate in Erasmus, as part of an arrangement with the Irish government.

Source: The Hindu

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