European Union Committee
Brexit: deal or no deal

7th Report of Session 2017-19 - published 7 December 2017 - HL Paper 46



Chapter 1: Introduction

The subject-matter of this report

This inquiry

Chapter 2: No deal

The Government’s position

The EU perspective

Defining ‘no deal’

Box 1: Article 50 TEU and no deal

The impact of ‘no deal’

Positive consequences

Negative implications

Case studies

Box 2: ‘No deal’ and financial services

Box 3: ‘No deal’ and the agri-food sector

Box 4: ‘No deal’ and freight, transportation and ports

Box 5: ‘No deal’ and aviation

Box 6: ‘No deal’ and higher education and research

Box 7: ‘No deal’ and the impact on Ireland and Northern Ireland

Box 8: ‘No deal’ and citizens’ rights

Scenarios for ‘no deal’

Figure 1: Possible ‘no-deal’ scenarios

Mitigating the impact of ‘no deal’

A ‘bare bones’ agreement

‘Stopping the clock’

Contingency planning


The impact of ‘no deal’

The prospects for a ‘bare-bones’ deal

Is no deal better than a bad deal?

The time factor

Chapter 3: Transition

Why transition?


The Government’s policy on transition

A ‘shadow agreement’

The length of the negotiations

What is transition for?

The legal basis for transition

EU law

UK law

‘Off the shelf’ alternatives to Article 50

The length of transition

Extending EU membership?

The ticking clock

The Government’s view

The timing of a transition agreement

The timing of agreement on future relations


The Government’s proposed timetable

‘Nothing is agreed until everything is agreed’

A phased approach?

The purpose and legal basis of transition

The ticking clock

Summary of conclusions and recommendations

Appendix 1: List of Members and declarations of interest

Appendix 2: List of witnesses

Appendix 3: Call for evidence

Evidence is published online at and available for inspection at the Parliamentary Archives (020 7219 3074).

Q in footnotes refers to a question in oral evidence.

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