Procedure : 2019/2817(RSP)
Document stages in plenary
Document selected : B9-0039/2019

Texts tabled :


Debates :

PV 18/09/2019 - 7
CRE 18/09/2019 - 7

Votes :

PV 18/09/2019 - 9.6
CRE 18/09/2019 - 9.6
Explanations of votes

Texts adopted :

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<TitreSuite>to wind up the debate on the statements by the Council and the Commission</TitreSuite>

<TitreRecueil>pursuant to Rule 132(2) of the Rules of Procedure</TitreRecueil>

<Titre>on the UK’s withdrawal from the EU</Titre>


<RepeatBlock-By><Depute>Gunnar Beck</Depute>

<Commission>{ID}on behalf of the ID Group</Commission>



European Parliament resolution on the UK’s withdrawal from the EU


The European Parliament,

 having regard to the free and democratic decision articulated by the British people on 23 June 2016,

 having regard to its resolutions of 5 April 2017 on negotiations with the United Kingdom following its notification that it intends to withdraw from the European Union[1] and of 3 October 2017 on the state of play of negotiations with the United Kingdom[2],

 having regard to the statements by the Council and the Commission of 18 September 2019 on the UK’s withdrawal from the EU,

 having regard to Rule 132(2) of its Rules of Procedure,

A. whereas on 23 June 2016, 51.8 % of UK voters (17.4 million people) voted to leave the European Union – almost exactly the same percentage of votes by which Ursula von der Leyen was elected President of the European Commission;

B. whereas any financial obligations that the UK has towards the EU – and vice-versa –cease, as a matter of international law, at the end of the notice period under Article 50, unless otherwise agreed;

C. whereas the UK is one of the EU’s largest net contributors and has been a net contributor for every year of its membership (except for 1975);

D. whereas the EU is a customs union with a common external tariff and is not, therefore, a free trade area;

E. whereas the EU is a club that intends to provide benefits to its Member States, which are, nonetheless, entitled to leave if they think the burden of membership outweighs the benefits;

F. whereas achieving an orderly withdrawal is contingent not only on the attitude of the United Kingdom, but also on the goodwill of the EU and the actors negotiating on its behalf;

G. whereas the withdrawal agreement offered by the EU has not been backed by a parliamentary majority in the United Kingdom and has therefore failed to find a solution to the possibility of an unregulated withdrawal;

1. Recalls that respect for the principles of democracy and national diversity are among the founding values of the EU Treaties;

2. Reminds the EU institutions and the Member States to not disregard these principles and instead to respect the democratic decision made by the British demos;

3. Strongly supports the idea of enabling and institutionalising intergovernmental cooperation among all European States – this very cooperation is indeed what led to the creation of the EU;

4. Takes note that the EU’s institutions have demonstrated a longstanding interest in expanding the scope of its competences beyond the original idea of a ‘Europe of nations’, as conceived by Charles de Gaulle;

5. Believes that the principle of subsidiarity is central to the idea of a ‘Europe of nations’ and that it would constitute an inevitable obstacle to the all too pervasive tendencies of centralisation and overregulation; regrets that the principle of subsidiarity has been flouted, subverted and eroded by the Commission and the Court of Justice of the European Union; stresses the need to resurrect the principle of subsidiarity; calls for certain competences to be returned to the Member States;

6. Welcomes the vibrant democratic traditions in certain Member States, which highlight a response against the unfortunate trend of centralisation;

7. Considers that the UK’s referendum result represents a legitimate choice by a Member State to turn its back on an ‘ever closer union’;

8. Believes that the UK’s departure is not just of benefit to the United Kingdom but also to all Member States, as it makes it clear that EU membership is not inevitable and that it is a democratic choice taken at national level;

9. Believes that any new arrangements between the departing UK and the rest of the European Union should set out to be reciprocal, as anything else will create resentment and create problems in the future;

10. Doubts that the Withdrawal Agreement has been drafted in a way that ensures reciprocity between the EU and the UK; stresses that the non-ratification of the Withdrawal Agreement by the House of Commons and the inability to find a parliamentary majority is a clear indication that the Agreement does not adequately reflect the interests of the United Kingdom;

11. Respects, therefore, Boris Johnson’s declared intention to leave the EU without a withdrawal agreement as a last-resort measure;

12. Stresses that almost any mutually agreed withdrawal agreement would have been more beneficial to the citizens, consumers and enterprises in the EU;

13. Points out that the failure to negotiate a mutually acceptable withdrawal agreement has endangered the economic well-being of millions of people in the EU; considers, therefore, that the agents responsible for the negotiation of the Withdrawal Agreement should be held accountable if parties fail to conclude a mutually acceptable withdrawal agreement; calls for the immediate resignation of Michel Barnier, who, as the EU’s Brexit negotiator, has caused months of damaging economic and political uncertainty with his hard-line and antagonistic negotiating tactics;

14. Remains sceptical with regard to what benefits another extension may bring;

15. Underlines that the results of the referendum have clearly demonstrated the will of the British people to leave the EU; considers that even a no-deal scenario and a changeover to WTO rules in the EU-UK trade relationship would be preferable to ignoring the will of the people;

16. Insists that the negotiation of a future agreement on the new forms of amicable cooperation between the EU and the UK should be delayed no longer so that such an agreement may come into force as soon as possible;

17. Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the European Council, the Council, the Commission, the national parliaments and the Government of the United Kingdom.


[1]OJ C 298, 23.8.2018, p. 24.

[2]OJ C 346, 27.9.2018, p. 2.

Last updated: 12 September 2019Legal notice