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Brexit: The future operation of the Channel Tunnel Fixed Link

Inquiry

The European Scrutiny Committee is considering the Government’s plans for the operation of the Channel Tunnel Fixed Link after the end of the Transition Period (as established by the UK/EU Withdrawal Agreement). The EU argues that EU law should continue to apply on the UK side of the Tunnel at the end of the Transition Period and that it should be overseen by the EU Court of Justice. In November 2020, the EU adopted legislation that permitted France to negotiate an agreement with the UK—on the future operation of the Tunnel—subject to the inclusion of these and other related conditions. The Government has repeatedly rejected the EU’s position and has stated in correspondence with the Committee that it favours an agreement that is compatible with “the UK’s status as a sovereign nation”. The Committee’s inquiry will consider the need for an agreement on the future operation of the Channel Tunnel, the EU’s position, the alternative arrangements suggested by the Government, and the potential implications of changes in the governance of the Tunnel for affected stakeholders.

For further information see: European Scrutiny Committee – Twenty-first Report (2019-21) HC 229-xvii, Chapter 5 (16 September 2020); Twenty-third Report (2019-21) HC 229-xix, Chapter 4 (1 October 2020); and Twenty-ninth Report (2019-21) HC 229-xxv, Chapter 2 (19 November 2020)