Draft mandate for negotiations in respect of Gibraltar Foreign Secretary statement

The European Commission has today published its draft mandate for the negotiations between the UK and the European Union (EU) in respect of Gibraltar. Once Member States have agreed the EU’s mandate, negotiations can begin. The Foreign Secretary and the Chief Minister of Gibraltar agreed the UK approach to negotiations in March.

Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said:

The UK, with Gibraltar, and Spain carefully agreed a pragmatic Framework Agreement, in full consultation with the EU Commission. The Commission’s proposed mandate, published today, directly conflicts with that Framework. It seeks to undermine the UK’s sovereignty over Gibraltar, and cannot form a basis for negotiations.

We have consistently showed pragmatism and flexibility in the search for arrangements that work for all sides, and we are disappointed that this has not been reciprocated. We urge the EU to think again.

On 31 December 2020, the UK Government, together with the Government of Gibraltar, reached a political agreement (the Framework) with the Kingdom of Spain on how a future agreement between the UK and the European Union in respect of Gibraltar would function in the interests of all parties.

At the UK-Gibraltar Joint Ministerial Council held in Gibraltar on 29th March 2021, the Foreign Secretary, the Rt Hon Dominic Raab MP and the Chief Minister of Gibraltar, the Hon Fabian Picardo QC agreed our joint approach to the upcoming negotiations on a treaty between the EU and the UK in respect of Gibraltar.

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