After four years of wrangling, Brexit is finally DONE.
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Wednesday signed Britain’s historic Brexit trade deal from the EU as MPs voted overwhelmingly in favour of the accord despite threats of a Labour Remainer rebellion.
The official copy of the hard-fought 1,200 page trade pact was signed by Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission.
Boris Johnson was then presented with the document in Number 10 as he did the honours and finally brought the curtain down on the Brexit saga which has dominated UK politics since the EU referendum in 2016.
“It has been a long road. It’s time now to put Brexit behind us. Our future is made in Europe,” von der Leyen said.
Mr. Johnson gave a thumbs up after inking what he described as “the beginning of what will be a wonderful relationship between the UK and our friends and partners in the EU”.
Britain will leave the European single market and customs union at 11:00 pm (2300 GMT) on Thursday, the end of a post-Brexit transition period marked by tortuous trade negotiations which culminated in the Christmas Eve deal.
London and Brussels would work “hand in glove whenever our values and interests coincide, while fulfilling the sovereign wish of the British people to live under their own sovereign laws made by their own sovereign parliament” Boris Johnson added.
Despite warnings that there will be more friction in trade due to breaking free from EU rules, the UK PM said the deal ‘if anything should allow companies to do even more business with our European friends, safeguarding millions of jobs and livelihoods in UK and across the continent’.
Mr. Johnson said for the first time since 1973 the UK would be an independent coastal nation, stressing that in five and a half years’ time after another transition Britain will have full control of its waters. ‘