87.We agree with our witnesses that the reference to Article 50 to “withdrawal rules” would provide a legal basis for some key elements of the transition. The withdrawal treaty could, for example, include provisions to ensure the contractual continuity of contracting parties entering into contracts with a retraction date.121 Professor Barnard said the Prime Minister had indicated “very carefully” a temporary passage of about two years. The question was “what would happen if we didn`t finish in two years.” The longer the transition, the more difficult it would be to justify a retrograde legal basis, rather than a legal basis referring to “a future trade agreement that must actually be done under the various legal orders of Articles 217 and 218″. The Status of Negotiations (June to September 2018) Release of the European Union Committee report, 18 September 2018Sensing that the government must urgently have priority to obtain a withdrawal agreement and avoid a “no deal” Brexit 137 written evidence from The Law Society (DND0046). However, we note that, should it come into force on 29 March 2019, the withdrawal agreement could, in the meantime, change the terms of the UK`s membership, for example by renouncing the requirement for the United Kingdom to participate in the 2019 European elections. Immobility, but how long? The EU (Withdrawal Agreement) 2020 (`WAA`) act provides for a transitional or status quo regime during which EU legislation continues to apply to the UK, as if the UK were still a Member State (subject to some limited exceptions). This means that the UK will continue to function as if it were part of the EU internal market and customs union, although it will no longer play any role in decision-making within the EU. 67.The Prime Minister also pointed out that: 90 The Chancellor of the Exchequer, who presented on 11 October to the Special Committee of the Ministry of Finance, described an interim agreement as “wasteful”: its value for the clarity and safety of businesses will decrease considerably in the first quarter of 2018.91 Mr Davis told us on 31 October. that the government reach an expected agreement on a transitional agreement by March 2018 at the latest: “By March next year, I hope that we will have – I intend to do so – a period of implementation.” 92 Yet most trade experts believe that it would theoretically be possible to conclude a basic, tariff-free agreement on trade in goods this year – if (and this is a fairly important if), the UK signs most of what the EU is going to ask for. “I think it`s an agreement. It may be a political agreement at this stage, because… the European Union will not be able to sign the next stage of the agreement with us until we are a third country.