On 6 September 2020, the Financial Times reported that the UK government was considering drafting new laws to circumvent the protocol of the Northern Ireland Withdrawal Agreement.  The new law would give ministers the power to determine which state aid should be notified to the EU and to define which products at risk of being transferred from Northern Ireland to Ireland (the withdrawal agreement stipulates that in the absence of a reciprocal agreement, all products are considered vulnerable).  The government defended this approach and stated that the legislation was in accordance with protocol and that it had only “clarified” the volumity in the protocol.  Ursula von der Leyen warned Johnson not to violate international law and said that the implementation of the withdrawal agreement by Britain was a “precondition for any future partnership”.  On 8 September, the Minister of Foreign Affairs for Northern Ireland, Brandon Lewis, told the British Parliament that the government`s internal market bill would “violate international law”.”  The withdrawal agreement sets out how the UK and the EU will resolve their outstanding financial obligations arising from the UK`s participation in the EU budget as a member state and wider aspects of its EU membership. The agreement on these financial aspects is known in the financial settlement (regulation). The 2019 revisions also adapted elements of the political declaration and replaced the word “appropriate” with “appropriate” with respect to labour standards. According to Sam Lowe, a trade fellow at the Centre for European Reform, the amendment excludes labour standards from dispute resolution mechanisms.  In addition, the Equal Competition Mechanism has been postponed from the legally binding withdrawal agreement to the political declaration, and the line of the political statement that “the United Kingdom will consider taking into account alignment with trade union rules in the relevant areas” has been removed.  The withdrawal agreement also contains provisions for the United Kingdom to leave the Convention setting the status of European schools, with the United Kingdom bound by the Convention and its accompanying regulations on accredited European schools until the end of the last academic year of the transition period, i.e. at the end of the spring semester 2020-2021.  The Brexit withdrawal agreement, officially titled the Uk`s withdrawal agreement from great Britain and Northern Ireland from the European Union and the European Atomic Energy Community, is a treaty signed on 24 January 2020 between the European Union (EU), Euratom and the United Kingdom (Uk) which sets the conditions for the UK`s withdrawal from the EU and Euratom.
The text of the treaty was published on 17 October 2019 and is a renegotiated version of an agreement published six months earlier. The previous version of the withdrawal agreement was rejected three times by the House of Commons, leading Queen Elizabeth II to accept Theresa May`s resignation as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom and appoint Boris Johnson as the new Prime Minister on 24 July 2019. The United Kingdom would continue to benefit from all programmes, as it did before the withdrawal, provided it complied with current EU legislation.  The agreement also provides for a transitional period that will last until 31 December 2020 and can be extended by mutual agreement.