The current status of Great Britain’s ‘Brexit’

The Brexit deadline has been looming over Great Britain for some time now and, unfortunately, any breakthroughs have proven elusive. The consequences of a “no-deal Brexit” could be absolutely devastating. Some of these issues may include, but are not limited to, possible shortages of medicine and benefits losses for British pensioners living in Europe and the split between the world’s fifth largest economy and a bloc that accounts for nearly half its trade. These would both have long lasting effects that would not be contained solely within Great Britain. The implications stretch across countries.

According to a political editorial writer for the Financial Times, Sebastian Payne, “if no withdrawal agreement is struck before 29 March, 2019, Britain will spill out of the bloc without formal trading arrangements. It would be forced to move onto basic World Trade Organization terms, which would introduce tariffs and customs checks overnight. Both sides expect it would bring an immediate administrative and economic disruption.” Mr. Payne goes on to state that the “May government is upping preparations for such a scenario—mostly to threaten Brussels that it is prepared to walk away from the talks if it does not broker a good deal.

The U.K. can prepare as much as it wants for a no-deal Brexit, but critically, it cannot control what the EU would or would not do.” All of this is fairly concerning for the entire global economic landscape. Either way, a deal must be made by March, and, at the moment, the odds seem to be at about fifty-fifty. The comforting fact is that everyone wants a deal, no matter the side. The disruption within Europe and the world would be immense and no one wants to witness an economic breakdown on a global scale.

Most recently, the Mayor of London Sadiq Khan wrote an op-ed in The Observer on Sunday in which he called for a public vote on any deal that will include an option to remain in the European Union. He states, “I don’t believe it’s the will of the people to face either a bad deal or, worse, no deal. That wasn’t on the table during the campaign.” Khan has mentioned that he isn’t calling for a second vote on Brexit. Instead he wants the people of Great Britain to have a say in the outcome of the negotiations, despite the current roadblocks. When asked about his opinion on the state of affairs in Great Britian, Junior Arend Buitnehuis stated, “If you are going to do something then do it. Dragging it out only makes them (the United Kingdom) look worse, and not doing it at all looks even worse.”

Another student, senior Tom Kouwe, commented that the aspects of trade and security intertwined between the EU and Great Britian are integral to many systems throughout the world. Simultaneouly, he stated “Overall, I wouldn’t say that I support Brexit, but I get it. I understand the idea of not wanting to obey laws that you don’t agree with that are made across Europe.


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