UK in CJEU
In a preliminary ruling in Commissioners for HMRC v Brockenhurst College C-699/15, the CJEU held that the College should be exempted from VAT for the provision of entertainment and restaurant facilities to third parties provided that this is ‘closely related’ to students’ study and is not for additional income for the college.
Evaluation of UK’s international obligations
The Lords International Relations Committee has published a report calling for a major re-shaping of UK policy in the Middle East and questioning whether the US should still set the tone for British foreign policy due to the unpredictability of Trump’s administration.
UK’s post-Brexit relationship with the EU
Whilst adopting negotiation guidelines for Brexit, reported in the Financial Times, European leaders have warned Theresa May over her ‘completely unreal’ expectations of a swift trade deal. Meanwhile Angela Merkel has laid down a hard line for Brexit talks, warning the UK against harbouring any ‘illusions’ about getting favours from the EU.
The leak to Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung of an account of Wednesday’s dinner between EU and UK negotiating teams has highlighted rising tensions and may do lasting damage in ‘poisoning the talks’, whilst Theresa May has accused Brussels of trying to influence the UK election.
However, for the UK in a Changing Europe, Professor Ryner has argued that the EU-27 is not as united as it makes out, and in the Financial Times David Allen Green has argued that there are three ways in which a ‘successful’ Brexit could be sabotaged, and that this seems to be what the Government is doing in practice.
Sir Julian King, the European commissioner responsible for security, has warned that the UK may have to recognise ECJ court rulings to keep security cooperation in countering terrorism and organised crime.
According to new Financial Times analysis following stricter demands driven by France and Germany, the EU has raised its opening demands for Britain’s Brexit bill to an upfront gross payment of €100bn. However David Davis has rejected this claim, stating that the rising estimates prove no deal is better than a bad deal. Meanwhile Barnier has stated that the UK’s financial obligations to the EU will be ‘incontestable’ and has insisted that liabilities must be settled before trade talks.
Agreeing with the European Ombudsman, Jean-Claude Juncker has promised transparency in Brexit negotiations, particularly where concerning the protection of citizen’s rights to move freely, whilst proposals from EU officials state that formal Brexit talks should be conducted in rigorous four-week cycles, in Brussels, with progress published once a month.
Lord Kerr, an author of art 50, has stated that uncertainty about who will lead Brexit divorce talks for Britain is a “very real problem”, leaving a 45% chance of no deal.
The Guardian reports on Lord Judge’s warning that Brexit will bring a “torrent” of legislation that risks being passed into law without proper parliamentary scrutiny.
At the request of the IMCO Committee, Policy Department A at the European Parliament has produced a paper considering the consequences of Brexit in the area of public procurement.
The House of Commons Library has published a briefing considering the potential for special arrangements to be negotiated for Gibraltar following Brexit.