Over the past few years, “Brexit” has become a buzzword. Brexit is a combination of British and exit, hence Brexit. Essentially, it means that the United Kingdom (UK) wants to leave the European Union (EU). The EU is massive, containing 28 countries in Europe. Within the EU, people can freely trade, live and travel around these countries. It’s a single market, so there is the same charge on goods and one set of rules and regulations. By leaving the EU, the UK will be impacted politically, socially and economically. Brexit is a complex and heated subject. In this blog, I will give a brief look at it.
Republic of Cyprus
Brexit, so far, has been rejected three times by the British government. The deal covers many topics, including the rights of the citizens in the EU and the UK and the amount the UK would pay the EU. The backstop is a particularly important part of Brexit.
According to CSIS, the backstop is more than a border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. It is a “clause in a draft treaty that was negotiated between the United Kingdom and the European Union, known as the Withdrawal Agreement, which details how the United Kingdom would leave the European Union.” The backstop would act as an insurance policy to ensure there is no hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland, no matter the trade deal struck by the EU and the UK. A border would create two separate blocs, each having its own customs and regulatory systems. It could also reignite tensions between Protestants and Catholics.
Originally, the EU proposed the backstop for only Northern Ireland. However, the DUP rejected it, claiming Northern Ireland would be alienated.
Leaving the EU
If the UK leaves without a “divorce plan” (deal), there will be major changes taking place. The no-deal Brexit would create checks on goods and tariffs as well as create delays at ports. It would mean leaving well-regarded institutions, such as the European Court of Justice and Europol. The EU budget would suffer as well since the UK contributes to it.
Brexit has the power to reshape the EU, especially Ireland. There will be debates about the outcome for years to come. Hopefully, there will be a solution that is agreeable to all.