Supporting persons who may lose their jobs in the event of no-deal Brexit: Council approves draft contingency measures

The European Union is taking measures to help workers and self-employed persons across the EU‑27 whose jobs and professional activities may be affected as a consequence of no-deal Brexit.

Today, member states’ ambassadors in the Council’s Permanent Representatives Committee (Coreper) approved the text of a draft regulation broadening the scope of the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund (EGF). The aim of the proposal is to support workers made redundant and self-employed persons whose activity has ceased as a result of economic disruptions caused by the withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the EU without a withdrawal agreement.

Coreper also confirmed that should the European Parliament agree to the use of the urgent procedure and approve the Commission’s proposal without amendments, the Council would approve the European Parliament’s position, resulting in the adoption of the regulation proposed by the Commission.

These measures will ensure that anyone who loses their job as a result of hard Brexit will not be let down. Solidarity is a core value of the EU and we have to make sure that in the event of major economic disruption nobody is left behind.

Timo Harakka, Minister of Employment for Finland

The draft regulation expands the globalisation criterion for the mobilisation of the EGF. It adds the withdrawal of the UK from the EU without agreement to other major causes of redundancies such as delocalisation of jobs, significant increase in imports into the Union or the rapid decline of the Union market share in a specific sector.

The regulation will apply from the day following that on which the Treaties cease to apply to the UK if there is no withdrawal agreement in place. However, this regulation will not apply if an agreement is concluded by the date of the UK’s withdrawal.


The EGF was initially set up in 2006 for the period 2007-2013 to support workers who have lost their jobs as a result of globalisation-related major structural changes. For the period 2014-2020, the scope of the fund was broadened to include job displacements resulting from any new global financial and economic crisis. In May 2018 the Commission published a proposal on the continuation of the EGF beyond 2020.