Brexit compromise: Gibraltar becomes part of the Schengen area

This question had to be clarified in 2020 with regard to Brexit: What will happen to the British overseas territory of Gibraltar? The governments in London and Madrid reached a compromise a few hours before the deadline.

Spain and the United Kingdom have agreed on a solution for Gibraltar. The British exclave in the south of the Iberian Peninsula will also be subject to EU rules after Brexit, said Spanish Foreign Minister Arancha Gonzalez Laya. This also includes belonging to the Schengen area. This will prevent the border between Spain and Gibraltar from becoming an impermeable external EU border from January 1st.

The agreement in principle reached between Madrid and London still has to be agreed between the EU and London, said Gonzalez Laya. The EU Commission would have to turn the agreement into a contract. She expects that will happen within six months.

Her British colleague Dominic Raab said that the negotiators’ goal was smooth border traffic, which is in the interests of the people on both sides.

ID cards are still sufficient

15,000 commuters from Spain cross the border every day. So far they only have to show their identity card and be waved through.

However, in times without Corona, around seven million tourists are added each year. If they had to have a passport stamped, the only transition would be overloaded and commuters would hardly get through.

Not part of the Christmas Eve deal

Gibraltar was not part of the Brexit agreement reached between the UK and the EU on Christmas Eve. The governments in Madrid and London had since negotiated how to deal with the British overseas border.

The consequence of Brexit is that Gibraltar is tying itself more closely to Spain and the European Union. In the 2016 Brexit referendum, 96 percent of Gibraltar’s 33,000 residents voted to remain in the EU.

Tagesschau24 reported on this topic on December 31, 2020 at 3:00 p.m.


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