The Data Adequacy agreement was passed by the European Council on 17 June 2021. This means that the UK is approved as having adequate data protection for the transfer of personal data from the EU and that all European States have approved the agreement. The endorsement of EU member states paves the way for the EU Commission to finalise the UK’s adequacy decisions before the end of June.
The UK Government has agreed that data transfers from the UK to the EU are authorised to continue until at least 2024.
The relationship between the EU and UK in this area remains largely similar to that which existed when the UK was a member of the EU. The agreement approves the UK’s data protection system and protocols for the transfer of personal data from Europe.
Following the UK’s departure from the EU, the UK and EU agreed to keep existing data transfer arrangements in place on a temporary basis, until 1 July 2021 latest, while they negotiated a permanent agreement.
This agreement is dependent upon the UK’s legislative and regulatory environment around data and if this changes too much the EU can re-evaluate the agreement in the future. Nonetheless, the agreement demonstrates enthusiasm from both sides to create strong links.
Business and data industry groups have welcomed the agreement on data adequacy.