Start of Brexit negotiations - Brussels
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Five main points from the government’s big Brexit deal

The UK's agreed to compromise, and a 'transition deal' has been struck

The UK and the EU were involved in another intense few days of talks, but have announced they've come to an agreement over how to manage the UK's transition period.

In a joint press statement, David Davis, the UK's Brexit secretary, and Michel Barnier, the EU's chief negotiator announced the areas they'd agreed on. They've also published a handily colour-coded document, which details everything that's been agreed, everything that's been agreed in principal, and stuff still to discuss. These are the five main points:

1. A deal's been struck, and a timeline agreed

The 'transition' period will last from March 2019 to the end of December 2020. During that period the UK will play by the rules of the EU's trading circle – the 'Single Market' – that gives it certain benefits, and allows it to trade freely with the EU. The UK had wanted that period to last longer, until March 2021, to allow businesses in the UK enough time to adjust, but the EU wasn't having any of it. During that time, the UK will lose its ability to influence and vote on EU-wide decisions. 

2. The UK can make new trade deals during the transition period

The UK is hoping to make new deals with EU countries once it leaves, to make sure they can still sell their goods there without having to pay heavy taxes (or tariffs). Under the agreed deal, the UK will be allowed to start those discussions.

3. They still can't agree on Northern Ireland

In today's deal, there's an 'emergency' option that could see Northern Ireland (which is part of the UK) keep EU laws if no other deal could be reached. Northern Ireland has the UK's only land border with the EU (the Republic of Ireland, which is the south of the island, isn't part of the UK and is very much still a part of the EU).

4. EU citizens arriving moving to the UK during the transition period will get the same rights as people already here

It's a big compromise for Theresa May, who very publicly said that she'd resist this.

5. The government's 'broken promises' to Scottish fishermen

One of the main selling points of Brexit to Scotland (which otherwise was very pro-Remain) was that the UK would leave a controversial EU fishing agreement that gives EU fisherman lots of access to Scottish waters, which means more competition for fish, which means less business for the Scottish fishermen. The UK government has compromised and agreed to remain in that fishing agreement during the transition period. Scottish MPs are saying they've been betrayed.

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