Britain insists that an agreement be reached to respect its regulatory autonomy and its status as an independent coastal state. The 2019 revisions also adapted elements of the political declaration and replaced the word “appropriate” with “appropriate” with respect to labour standards. According to Sam Lowe, a trade fellow at the Centre for European Reform, the amendment excludes labour standards from dispute resolution mechanisms.  In addition, the Equal Competition Mechanism has been postponed from the legally binding withdrawal agreement to the political declaration, and the line of the political statement that “the United Kingdom will consider taking into account alignment with trade union rules in the relevant areas” has been removed.  The most important elements of the draft agreement are: The European Commission published on 18 March a draft treaty covering all aspects of the EU`s future future relations with the UK (see below). The United Kingdom has also submitted texts covering some of its proposed agreements, including a free trade agreement. These have not been published and the government has asked the European Commission not to share these texts with the Member States. The British Parliament approved the draft agreement by adopting on 23 January 2020 the implementing laws (the 2020 Withdrawal Agreement Act) of the European Union (withdrawal agreement). Following the signing of the agreement, the UK Government adopted and tabled the UK`s ratification instrument on 29 January 2020.  The agreement was ratified by the Council of the European Union on 30 January 2020, after approval by the European Parliament on 29 January 2020.
The UK`s withdrawal from the EU came into force on 31 January 2020 at 11 .m GMT, when the withdrawal agreement came into force in accordance with Article 185. On 5 May, the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, Michael Gove, told the EU House of Lords Committee that the government was ready to abandon the objective of a “zero, zero quota” free trade agreement and accept certain tariffs if it meant not to sign the same tariffs desired by the EU.