Britain’s Phased Brexit Plan Summary

On February 2, the United Kingdom government published a white paper, titled The United Kingdom’s exit from and new partnership with the European Union, to provide the parliament and the people of the UK with a clear vision of what the country is seeking to achieve in negotiating its exit from, and new partnership with, the European Union (EU).

The paper sets out a plan for the strong new partnership the UK wants to build with the EU. It set outs the basis for 12 priorities announced by Prime Minister Theresa May and the broad strategy that unites them in forging a new strategic partnership between the UK and the EU.

The paper said that the UK government will provide business and public with as much certainty as possible throughout the negotiations. To provide legal certainty over its exit from the EU, the government will introduce the Great Repeal Bill to remove the European Communities Act 1972 from the statute book and convert the ‘acquis’ – the body of existing EU law – into domestic law.

Here are main points from the paper:

– The UK will continue to build a national consensus around its negotiating position by listening and talking to as many organizations, companies, and institutions as possible.

– The UK will take control of its own affairs, “as those who voted in their millions to leave the EU demanded we must, and bring an end to the jurisdiction in the UK of the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU).”

– Leaving the EU will mean that the UK’s laws will be made in London, Edinburgh, Cardiff and Belfast, and will be based on the specific interests and values of the country. “In chapter 1 we set out how the Great Repeal Bill will ensure that our legislatures and courts will be the final decision makers in our country,” the paper said.

– The UK will make sure that the devolved administrations are fully engaged in its preparations to leave the EU. The government will be working with the administrations in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland to deliver an outcome that works for the whole of the UK. “In seeking such a deal we will look to secure the specific interests of Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, as well as those of all parts of England. A good deal will be one that works for all parts of the UK,” according to the paper.

– Maintaining strong and historic ties with Ireland will be an important priority for the UK in the talks ahead. This includes protecting the Common Travel Area (CTA).

– The UK will remain an open and tolerant country, and one that recognizes the valuable contribution migrants make to the society and welcomes those with the skills and expertise to make the nation better still. But in future, the UK must ensure it can control the number of people coming to the UK from the EU.

– The UK wants to secure the status of EU citizens who are already living in the UK, and that of UK nationals in the other Member States, as early as we can.

– As we convert the body of EU law into a domestic legislation, the UK will ensure the continued protection of workers’ rights. This will give certainty and continuity to employees and employers alike, creating stability in which the UK can grow and thrive.

– The government will prioritize securing the freest and most frictionless trade possible in goods and services between the UK and the EU. “We will not be seeking membership of the Single Market but will pursue instead a new strategic partnership with the EU, including an ambitious and comprehensive Free Trade Agreement and a new customs agreement,” according to the paper.

– By leaving the EU, the UK will have the opportunity to strike free trade agreements with countries around the world.

– From space exploration to clean energy, from medical technologies to agri-tech, the UK will remain at the forefront of collective endeavors to better understand, and make better, the world in which we live.

– The UK will continue to work with the EU to preserve the UK and European security and to fight terrorism and uphold justice across Europe.

On June 23, 2016, the people of the UK made voted to leave the EU. The government said that it will honor people’s wishes, and will not make any attempt to remain in the EU by the back door. The prime minister will trigger Article 50 of the Treaty on the EU by the end of March this year to begin the process of exit.

“Whatever the outcome of our negotiations, we will seek a more open, outward-looking, confident and fairer UK, which works for all,” wrote David Davis, secretary of state for exiting the EU.

Google’s Waymo Cars Driven 2.5m Autonomous Miles and Accelerating

Waymo, formerly the Google self-driving car project, has completed more than 2.5 million miles of autonomous driving on public roads in the past few years, Dmitri Dolgov, head of Waymo’s self-driving technology, said in a blog post.

He said that Waymo is accelerating the pace of testing on public roads and in simulation as part of its efforts to bring fully self-driving cars to more people. Citing this year’s California disengagement report, Dolgov added that the company has significantly improved its fully self-driving technology. The report shows that Waymo’s rate of safety-related disengages has dropped from 0.8 disengages per thousand miles in 2015 to 0.2 per thousand miles in 2016.

“Disengages are a natural part of the testing process and occur when a driver takes manual control of a vehicle while it is in autonomous mode. Testing, including disengages, allows our engineers to safely add to our software’s driving skills, expand hardware capabilities, and identify areas of improvement,” Dolgov said.

He noted that disengages are helping Waymo to further improve its technology.

“During testing our objective is not to minimize disengagements; rather, it is to gather, while operating safely, as much data as possible to enable us to improve our self-driving system. Therefore, we set disengagement thresholds conservatively, and each is carefully recorded. We have an evaluation process in which we identify disengagements that may have safety significance,” according to Waymo.

The report shows that Waymo operated its self-driving cars in autonomous mode for more than 2.3 million miles as of November 2016. Of those, 635,868 miles occurred on public roads in California, with the vast majority on surface streets in the typical suburban city environment of Mountain View, and neighboring communities. Though Waymo increased its driving by 50% in California, its total number of reportable disengages fell from 341 in 2015 to 124.

Further, Dolgov said that despite cars getting smarter and more advanced, road fatalities in the United States are on the rise. And human error is involved in 94% of all crashes. That is a reason for Waymo to work “harder than ever to bring self-driving cars that don’t get tired or distracted, to our roads.”

He noted that the drop in safety-related disengages shows the significant work Waymo has been doing to make its software and hardware more capable and mature.

“And because we’re creating a self-driving car that can take you from door to door, almost all our time has been spent on complex urban or suburban streets. This has given us valuable experience sharing the road safely with pedestrians and cyclists, and practicing advanced maneuvers such as making unprotected left turns and traversing multi-lane intersections,” Dolgov said.

Dolgov said that Waymo will continue to work harder to make its cars safer. With a hundred tragic road deaths every single day, Waymo is “motivated to work with governments and policymakers to deploy our technology safely and quickly.” He added that Waymo is very optimistic about bringing fully self-driving cars on the public roads.