EU fishing access in British waters has been a major stumbling block in negotiations, and this continued to be the case right up until the trade deal was signed.
The UK clinched a post-Brexit trade deal with the EU earlier on Thursday, just seven days before it fully leaves on of the world’s biggest trading blocs at the end of the tyransition period on December 31.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen have remained in close contact over recent days in order to help get the agreement over the lines.
Trade talks between the EU’s chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier and the UK’s Lord Frost continued throughout Christmas Eve as the final details were confirmed.
A Downing Street source had earlier said: “Deal is done. “We have taken back control of our money, borders, laws, trade and our fishing waters.”
“The deal is fantastic news for families and businesses in every part of the UK. We have signed the first free trade agreement based on zero tariffs and zero quotas that has ever been achieved with the EU.”
“We have delivered this great deal for the entire United Kingdom in record time, and under extremely challenging conditions, which protects the integrity of our internal market and Northern Ireland’s place within it.”