On Tuesday afternoon, 9 January 2018, members of the standing committee on European Affairs had a meeting with Michel Barnier. This Frenchman is the chief Brexit negotiatior on behalf of the European Commission. The MPs discussed with him the progress in the negotiations on Britain's withdrawal from the European Union (EU).
During the meeting with Mr Barnier, Mr Pieter Omtzigt MP (CDA), who chaired the meeting, handed over a copy of a report on the consequences of Brexit for the Netherlands. Omtzigt is one of the rapporteurs on Brexit of the House of Representatives. The report says that the Netherlands must prepare for a Brexit without any arrangements. This is the so-called chaos scenario, in which the United Kingdom (UK) leaves the EU without a transition period and without any agreement on the new relationship between the EU and the UK. Should an agreement be reached after all, the House of Representatives will have to approve it.
The following MPs were present at the meeting with Mr Barnier:
•Han ten Broeke (VVD)
•Pieter Omtzigt (CDA)
•Joost Sneller (D66)
•Bram van Ojik (Green Left)
•Jasper van Dijk (SP)
Other consultations in The Hague
In the Hague, Barnier also had talks with representatives from Dutch employers' organisations, who are concerned about the economic impact of Brexit, and with Prime Minister Mark Rutte and Halbe Zijlstra, minister of Foreign Affairs.
Following a referendum held in 2016, the UK announced its intention to withdraw from the EU. Since June 2017, the UK and the EU have been conducting negotiations on the (financial) conditions of Britain's exit from the EU. Frenchman Michel Barnier leads the negotiations on the side of the European Commission. David Davis is the chief Brexit negotiator on behalf of the United Kingdom. The British Prime Minister, Theresa May, has set the final date for the UK's withdrawal from the EU for 29 March 2019.