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This issue of the Brexit Brief notes the state of play following the recent Irish General Election, and as the UK and EU move towards the opening of negotiations on the future relationship.

On 3 February 2020, the European Commission published its Recommendation to the European Council on the adoption of its negotiation mandate, calling for the closest relationship possible with the UK.

On the same day, the UK Government published a short statement outlining its proposal for a future relationship with the EU. Prime Minister Boris Johnson has called for a Canada- or Australia-style trading relationship with the EU, alongside “a suite of agreements” covering security, fisheries and other issues of mutual interest. While the UK moves into this phase of the withdrawal process, complications regarding the implementation of the Protocol on Northern Ireland/Ireland arise.

This Brexit brief is available here.