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For about three years I was a full-time Legal Translator at the Court of Justice of the European Union at Luxembourg, translating the Court Reports from French into English. The function of the Court is to see that the EU Treaties and the Regulations made under them are correctly implemented and duly complied with.


As a result of having worked for the EU Court at Luxembourg, I am against Brexit.


The result of the No Deal Brexit now contemplated will be that you will need a Residence Permit (Carte de Séjour) to live in France. If you want to take a job or go for an occupation, you will need a Work Permit (Permis de Travail). For these purposes you will need to stand in lengthy queues at the Service des Etrangers in the local Préfecture once or twice. But in my opinion it is a foregone conclusion that you will get these documents, so Brexit will not constitute any practical hindrance to your living and working in France.


Nevertheless pension arrangements and health insurance matters may be adversely affected. I am not yet able to advise on these matters.


L’Acquis Communautaire is a French expression not fully translatable into English, which is why it is used. Nevertheless, as a member of the Institute of Translation and Interpreting, I shall proffer an translation : The European Achievement.


Some of the salient elements of the European Achievement are as follows :


  1. - Peace between Germany and France for more than 70 years.
  3. - A single market without customs barriers.
  5. - A legal framework for preventing large companies from rigging the market or abusing a dominant position.
  7. - A legal framework for persons moving from one Member State to another while accumulating Social Security entitlements and Pension rights.
  9. - Common safety standards.
  11. - Common legislation and standards for restricting pollution.


Henceforward, the European Achievement can be expected, in addition, to include measures designed to reduce or even stop climate change.


Something needs to be done about immigration. There ought to be agreed EU procedures whereby a Member State can set limits to immigration from any particular other Member State or from all other Member States for periods of time, perhaps lengthy, to be determined on a case by case basis. The procedures to be followed need to be set out in a Regulation made by the European Council, and those procedures need to be subject to the control of the European Court.


A No Deal Brexit, if implemented, will result in the EU’s common external tariff being applied to all exports by Britain to Europe. As regards imports, it will cause delays to supply-chains for manufacturing purposes. All of this will cause damage to the UK economy. It is not yet clear how much.


No deal Brexit, if implemented, will also have a negative psychological impact. The European Union is Britain’s largest so best commercial customer. No deal Brexit means being rude to Britain’s best customer. That is highly unwise.


China would appear to be overtaking the United States as the World’s super-power. As a counterweight, a strong United Europe would appear to be very desirable. In these circumstances, a Hard Brexit refusal to collaborate is all the more unwise.


According to a recent You Gov Poll for the Times, only 28% of voters favour a No Deal Brexit. Moreover of voters aged 18 to 24, only 8% want to go for it. Let us emphasise this latter point : of those aged 18-24, an overwhelming ninety-two percent do not want a No Deal Brexit. The House of Commons does not want No Deal Brexit


I am not yet convinced that No Deal Brexit is really going to go through. Let us wait to see.


What about dulcetto soft Brexit with a deal? Frankly I dont want that either. I think that Britain should remain a fully fledged Member State of the EU, fully collaborating with it and continuously strengthening and improving it.


We’ll see. Let me say it in French : Nous verrons.


5 July 2019


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