Windsor Framework

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The Windsor Framework is a proposed post-Brexit legal agreement between the European Union and the United Kingdom which was announced on 27 February 2023. It is designed to address the problem of the movement of goods between the EU single market and the United Kingdom in the current Northern Ireland Protocol.[1]

The Windsor Framework was named after the meeting of the UK Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak, and the President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, at the Fairmont hotel at Windsor Great Park. After meeting the PM and announcing the deal at the Windsor Guildhall, von der Leyen then had tea with King Charles III in Windsor Castle.[2]

The proposed agreement was reached in accordance with Articles 16 and 17 of the NI Protocol and does not formally need parliamentary approval. However, the Prime Minister has promised that MPs shall have an opportunity to vote on it. Its adoption will likely halt the Northern Ireland Protocol Bill and the infringement procedures by the European Commission brought against the UK in relation to the bill.[3]

On the EU side, the agreement will have to pass with a qualified majority in the Council of the European Union. Some parts of the agreement will have to obtain the consent of the European Parliament.

Gauging opinion

On 7 March 2023, the DUP announced the setting-up of an eight-member panel including former party leaders to gauge opinion on the Windsor Framework.

Leader Sir Jeffrey Donaldson said Baroness Foster and Peter Robinson would be part of the group that would have a "focused consultation". He has insisted the DUP will take time before coming to a "collective decision" on whether to back the deal announced by the UK and EU.[4]


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Document:Sunak likes the single market. So why doesn't Labour?Article5 March 2023William Keegan"I had many criticisms of Thatcherism and its impact on unemployment and social harmony, but one thing Margaret Thatcher got right was the importance of the EU single market and attracting Japanese, German and other firms to the UK. All this is now up for grabs by Starmer and his team."
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