Brexit poses a unique set of challenges to both the UK and the European Union. Its multifaceted implications will affect several crucial domains, including that of European defence. In this context, two elements are particularly relevant: London’s future membership in the customs union and the degree of UK participation in EU defence collaboration and future relationship with the European Defence Agency (EDA).
At present, the complexity of the issue and the frequent twists and turns in the negotiations make it extremely difficult to speculate on the future EU-UK relationship. All outcomes seem possible, from the best-case scenario of a customs union plus a defence partnership, to the eventuality of a soft free trade agreement coupled with a defence partnership. Even the worst-case option, the so-called “no deal” scenario, cannot be completely ruled out at this stage.
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