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June 22nd, 2016 11:02 AM by Christel Silver

On June 23, 2016 Great Britain will have a historical referendum to vote whether to stay in the European Union (EU) or not.  This event is called BREXIT (a combination of Britain and Exit). At the moment it seems there is a possibility for an exit.  But what does this mean?

Polling the people, it appears that the main reason is how the EU is handling the refugee crisis and the fear of losing employment due to the increased social benefits for the refugees.  But Great Britain always has not been a tight member for the EU: they did not join the conversion to the Euro – their currency is still the Pound, and they never joined the Schengen-Agreement - an open border agreement for EU countries.  They are seeing the benefits of the EU mainly in the free trade zone with economic benefits.

So far no large country exited the EU – the only country exiting the EU is Greenland.  But there is also a growing unhappiness among the European countries visible. There are new parties in France and Germany – if growing – there could be an increased movement against the EU.   If there is an exit of Great Britain, a possible for tax increase for goods and stricter regulations is eminent, which could translate in losing jobs.  This is one reason for voting NO!

There is another interesting factor: Scotland is very much in favor for staying in the EU –

If the vote on June 23rd is in favor of an exit, a split between Scotland and England is possible.  The vote for separation last year was very marginal.  Staying in the EU for Scotland if Britain is exiting might change the outcome of the separation!

Therefor the outcome of this referendum has many consequences and it will be interesting to see! 

Posted in:International
Posted by Christel Silver on June 22nd, 2016 11:02 AM