EU Officials Sign Post-Brexit Trade Deal With U.K.

European Council President Charles Michel prepares to sign the Brexit trade agreement, due to come into force on Jan. 1, 2021, in Brussels, Belgium, Wednesday. (Reuters/Johanna Geron/Pool)

The European Union’s top officials have formally signed the post-Brexit trade deal with the United Kingdom.

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and European Council President Charles Michel put pen to paper on Wednesday morning during a brief signature ceremony in Brussels. The documents will then be flown across the Channel to London in a RAF plane for British Prime Minister Boris Johnson to sign them.

The U.K. Parliament will later start debating the agreement setting up new trade rules between the 27-nation bloc and former member Britain. The agreement needs approval from Britain’s Parliament and from the EU’s legislature, which is not expected to take up the deal for weeks.

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