Friday, December 15, Brussels – President Dalia Grybauskaitė attends the European Council meeting that takes stock of the outcomes reached during the first phase of Brexit negotiations. The EU leaders also discuss top priorities in the second phase of negotiations, which will establish a new model of EU-UK future relations.
The key matter to Lithuania has already been secured in Brexit negotiations, i.e. rights of the Lithuanian citizens residing in the UK will be protected, and the United Kingdom will uphold its financial commitments.
According to the President, the most complex work awaits in the future. Following the agreement on the UK’s withdrawal, the EU and UK will have to establish a completely new model of future relations. For Lithuania, the mutual benefit as well as close relations in trade and defense are paramount. This represents our national security and economic interest.
The European Council debates on transitional periods in order to help Lithuanian, European and British people as well as businesses to adapt to the changed environment after Brexit. They would facilitate avoiding legal vacuum until a final decision on EU-UK future relations is reached.
The United Kingdom is an important economic partner of Lithuania. Export of Lithuanian goods and services to the UK amounts to 1.3 billion euros while bilateral trade amounts to almost 1.6 billion euros. The United Kingdom is a close ally of Lithuania in security and defense. Its troops contribute to our regional security, and the East StratCom Task Force was created on joint initiative of Lithuania and the United Kingdom for fighting against propaganda on the EU scale.
In the first phase of Brexit talks, an agreement was reached with the United Kingdom that citizens of Lithuania and other EU member states, residing in the United Kingdom would not be discriminated against in seeking employment, education, social and health care. The United Kingdom has also undertaken to observe its commitments in the current EU’s Multiannual Financial Framework. For Lithuania, this means that the financial support of the EU, secured until 2020, will not go down due to Brexit. An agreement was reached aimed at facilitating the border issue between the Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.
Last updated 2017.12.15 13:57Back