The United Kingdom and the European Union reached an agreement at the European Council on the withdrawal of the United Kingdom from Great Britain and Northern Ireland from the European Union. The revised withdrawal agreement and the political declaration were discussed and approved at the European Council on 17 October 2019. Ministers say legislation is needed to prevent “damaging” tariffs on goods travelling from the rest of the UK to Northern Ireland if negotiations with the EU for a free trade agreement fail. It added that any deviation from the withdrawal agreement, however weak, would “violate international law and undermine trust.” The agreement also provides for a transitional period, which will last until 31 December 2020 and can be extended by mutual agreement. During the transitional period, EU legislation will continue to apply to the UK (including participation in the European Economic Area, the internal market and the customs union) and the UK will continue to contribute to the EU budget, but the UK will not be represented in EU decision-making bodies. The transition period will give businesses time to adapt to the new situation and the new era, so that the British and European governments can negotiate a new trade agreement between the EU and the UK.   The most important elements of the draft agreement are:  On 15 November 2018, the day after the agreement was presented and the support of the British government cabinet, several members of the government resigned, including Dominic Raab, Secretary of State for leaving the European Union.  The new political declaration sets out the framework for future relations between the European Union and the United Kingdom and reflects the Government`s ambition to conclude an ambitious, comprehensive, comprehensive and flexible partnership on trade and economic cooperation with the EU, at the heart of a free trade agreement with the EU, as well as agreements on security and other areas of cooperation. The agreement was revised as part of the Johnson Department renegotiation in 2019. The amendments amend about 5% of the text The withdrawal agreement provides for a transitional period until 31 December 2020, during which time the UK will remain in the internal market to ensure the smooth flow of trade until a long-term relationship is concluded. If no agreement is reached by then, the UK will leave the single market without a trade deal on 1 January 2021.