For Boris Johnson, this is a personal victory as he can now claim that he has managed to protect national sovereignty after Brexit, an ambition that had been driving the entire agenda of the Brexiteers.
It was a much needed Christmas gift for the British Prime Minister, Boris Johnson. He was insistent throughout the last few months that London would be willing to walk away and that the UK would “prosper mightily” if there was no agreement in the end. Yet the uncertainty and the leap into the unknown was a real danger which pushed him to be personally involved till the last minute in the negotiations with the European Union (EU) trying to avoid the potential disruption of a relationship that has lasted four decades without a ready replacement.
It has been a long process ever since the UK became the first country to leave the EU known as Brexit — British exit — after the referendum of June 2016 in which Britons voted 52% to 48% to leave the EU. Since then the UK and the EU have been trying to define the future contours of their relationship but the negotiations went to the wire, as the current arrangement ends on 31 December. Though the details of the final pact are yet to be released, the full document is more than 1,600 pages long with new rules for how the UK and EU will live, work and trade together.
The two sides had very different priorities and the fact that they both are declaring victory at the end of contentious negotiations is remarkable diplomatic accomplishment. And for Boris Johnson this is a personal victory as he can now claim that he has managed to protect national sovereignty after Brexit, an ambition that had been driving the entire agenda of the Brexiteers.