The NI Protocol, known as the “backstop,” is intended to be temporary and valid unless it is replaced by an agreement on the future relationship that the parties will seek to conclude by December 31, 2020. The Protocol foresees that the common travel area and North-South cooperation will continue to a large extent as they do today, as will the internal electricity market (so that some EU legislation on wholesale electricity markets will continue to apply). If we did not get these approvals from the EU and the UK, there would be no withdrawal agreement and the UK would leave the EU on 29 March 2019 before facing a no-deal Brexit. The Protocol on Gibraltar shall apply until the end of the transitional period, with the exception of the provisions on citizens` rights, which shall continue thereafter. The Protocol covers the preparation of the application of the civil rights part of the Withdrawal Agreement and allows for the application of EU law at Gibraltar airport if the United Kingdom and Spain agree on this point; establishes cooperation between Spain and the United Kingdom in tax, environmental protection and fisheries matters, as well as in police and customs matters. The Memoranda of Understanding between the United Kingdom and Spain facilitate cooperation between the competent authorities of Gibraltar and Spain at the labour level, in particular through the deployment of joint committees in the areas of citizens` rights, the environment, police, customs and tobacco. During the transition period, the United Kingdom is free to negotiate, sign and ratify international agreements concluded in its own capacity, provided that such agreements enter into force or apply after the transition period. The 2019 revisions also adapted elements of the political declaration, replacing the word “appropriate” with “appropriate” in relation to labour standards. According to Sam Lowe, a trade researcher at the Centre for European Reform, the change excludes labour standards from dispute resolution mechanisms.  In addition, the level playing field mechanism has been moved from the legally binding Withdrawal Agreement to the Political Declaration and the line in the Political Declaration that “the UK will consider aligning itself with EU legislation in relevant areas” has been deleted.  The Withdrawal Agreement, which covers 599 pages, covers the following main areas: Protocol on Sovereign Control Areas in Cyprus: The text of the draft Withdrawal Agreement contains a “reserved area” for a mechanism that will ensure the proper implementation of EU law applicable to sovereignty areas in Cyprus after the withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the EU. Instead, it now seems likely that it will be addressed in the Withdrawal Agreement through new provisions based on the repealed Court, which would become the legal instrument by which EU law in the UK applies to the areas of law and period agreed in a Withdrawal Agreement, and this seems very likely.
The UK Parliament must conduct two approval procedures before the UK can ratify the Withdrawal Agreement. The EU Withdrawal Act 2018 and the Constitutional Reform and Governance Act 2010 (CRAG) are procedural obstacles to the UK`s ability to ratify what has been negotiated. The Withdrawal Act also provides for a parliamentary process in the event that an agreement is rejected by the House of Commons or if a negotiated agreement is never presented to it . . . .