Explanatory Notes

Clause 8: Frontier workers

138 This clause provides Ministers of the Crown with powers to make regulations to put in place protections to the rights of EU, EEA EFTA and Swiss frontier workers who are economically active in, but not resident in, the UK at the end of the implementation period, and the ability to establish a permit scheme enabling the issuance of documents to frontier workers. This clause may also be used to give effect to amendments to the Withdrawal Agreement, and the EEA EFTA Separation Agreement adopted by the Joint Committee falling within the scope of the matters provided for by this clause.

139 Under the Common Travel Area (CTA), UK and Irish citizens will have the right to move freely and work across the Irish border, and so will not need to rely on these frontier worker rights. A Memorandum of Understanding between the UK and Ireland on the Common Travel Area was signed between the UK Government and the Irish Government on 8 May 2019. The Memorandum of Understanding is clear that the national laws of the UK and Ireland will continue to provide for the right to work afforded to British citizens in Ireland and Irish citizens in the UK.

140 This power may also be used to give effect to amendments to the Withdrawal Agreement, and the EEA EFTA Separation Agreement, adopted by the Joint Committee falling within the scope of the matters provided for by this clause.

141 Subsection (1) provides Ministers of the Crown with a power to make regulations for the purpose of implementing Articles 24(3) and 25(3) of the Withdrawal Agreement, Articles 23(3) and 24(3) of the EEA EFTA Separation Agreement, and Article 20(2) of the Swiss Citizens’ Rights Agreement, concerning rights of employed and self-employed frontier workers to enter their state of work, and retention of the rights that they enjoyed as workers there before the end of the implementation period.

142 Subsection (2) provides Ministers of the Crown with a power to make regulations for the purpose of implementing Article 26 of the Withdrawal Agreement, Article 25 of the EEA EFTA Separation Agreement, and Articles 21(1)(a) and 21(2) of the Swiss Citizens’ Rights Agreement. These provisions allow for a permit system to certify EU citizens, EEA EFTA and Swiss nationals as frontier workers in the UK at the end of the implementation period.

143 Subsection (3) states that the power to make regulations under this clause may be made by modifying the Immigration Acts, as defined in Schedule 1 of the Interpretation Act 19781, including secondary legislation made under those Acts, or any other secondary legislation.

1 Schedule 1 of the Interpretation Act 1978 states that the ‘Immigration Acts’ has the meaning given by section 61(2) of the UK Borders Act 2007.

 

Prepared 19th December 2019