Once the Brexit deal has finished going through the UK parliament, does it still have to be ratified by the national government of each EU member or has it already got past that stage?

  • My understanding is that it still has to go through all 27 parliaments and some regional legislatures too. It is a very good point which you raise. And in that context the potential cause célèbre between the UK and Cyprus (which involves, by extension, Israel), takes on a new importance.
    – WS2
    Jan 1, 2020 at 8:54
  • @WS2: you're talking about the "future relationship" (as an actual treaty, not a mere "political declaration") which is a different thing. euronews.com/2019/11/01/… Jan 1, 2020 at 10:12

1 Answer 1


Under Article 50(2), once the European Parliament has approved the withdrawal agreement, the European Council (i.e. heads of government) will vote to approve it. None of these votes has yet happened.

There is no need in EU law for the agreement to be ratified in individual parliaments. Only a qualified majority of EU states (15 states representing 65% of the population) voting for it at an EU summit is required for the withdrawal agreement to be approved by national governments.

  • 1
    But presumably any eventual trade agreement requires parliamentary support in all countries?
    – WS2
    Jan 1, 2020 at 9:00
  • 3
    The exact requirements will depend on the laws in each individual country. I believe they all require at least a vote in their national parliament, while some will have additional requirements on top of this (eg. Belgian law will also require the consent of regional parliaments). But this applies to the future trade deal (if one is reached), not to the withdrawal agreement.
    – Joe C
    Jan 1, 2020 at 9:08
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    The Council thresholds you mention only apply if the deal (or any proposal) also has the approval of the Commision, which in this case it does... (The Council threshold is higher [72% % of the members and representing 65% of the population] otherwise.) Jan 1, 2020 at 10:23
  • @WS2, the requirements for the eventual agreement depend on the scope of that agreement. Trade matters are up to the EU, many others are up to the individual nations.
    – o.m.
    Jan 1, 2020 at 13:06

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