UK minister tries to reassure BOTs over Brexit

| 31/01/2020 | 32 Comments
Cayman News Service
Premier Alden McLaughlin chats to Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon

(CNS): The UK minister responsible for the British Overseas Territories, Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon, has issued a statement trying to reassure the BOTs that Britain’s departure from the European Union on Friday will not impact their residents over the next eleven months. Lord Ahmad said it was a priority for him and the UK government to work closely with “territory leaders to identify the opportunities and concerns” over Brexit.

Residents of the territories who are studying, working, living or travelling in the European Union, or planning to do so in the future, will be affected in the same way as residents of the UK. However, economic and environmental consequences for the BOTs will be different than for Britain.

Some territories are dependent on aid from the EU, research support or markets, but these issues are a long way from being resolved. Regardless of the minister’s attempts to reassure the BOTs that the “new dynamics in the United Kingdom’s Parliament and the decisive action of the Prime Minister to press ahead with Brexit” will not have an adverse impact, the fact is that no one really knows.

The one certainty is that by midnight Greenwich meantime, the UK will formally leave the EU, but there is less certainty over how the British economy will be impacted by that over the next year, as the government attempts to negotiate a new trade deal with the Europeans.

Lord Ahmad said the ‘Withdrawal Agreement’ provides for an implementation period lasting until 31 December 2020, providing a period of transition before Brexit-related changes take place.

“We want to take this opportunity to set out what this means for people and businesses in the OTs,” he said in a statement. “During the implementation period, your rights and those of your family members will not change, and neither will the relationship OT companies and NGOs have with the EU,” he added.

Eligibility for British passports will not be affected, he said, and the rules on travelling to the EU will remain the same throughout the implementation period. British Citizen passport holders will be able to continue to live, work and study in the EU. The 90-day visa-free access to the Schengen area for 180 days will also not change yet.

He said the UK government had agreed to cover EU-funded projects in the OTs if the payments cease but under the deal, the OT funding will continue.

“I want to both assure you and to leave you in no doubt that the United Kingdom is absolutely committed to the safety and prosperity of each of our British OTs. Brexit is no exception to this,” the UK minister stated.

“As we head into the next phase of the negotiations and take up the opportunities afforded by our departure from the EU, including the ability to negotiate our own trade agreements around the world, the continuing priority for the United Kingdom Government is to ensure that the voices of our OTs are heard. And that your priorities inform our approach to the negotiations every step of the way,” he claimed.

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Category: Politics

Comments (32)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    EU fiscal and monetary policy is controlled by Germany which is good for Germans but few others. Was just in Greece. Unbelievably poor and depressed. They created their financial woes but the EU is making it worse still. The uberstate kills off all innovation and job growth. If the UK can shake off some of its own socialist tendencies all will be well.

  2. Anonymous says:

    What EU funding? The EU has done diddly squat for BOTs. The independent UK with its BOTs will be way better off.

  3. anon says:

    I actually voted at the “No” at the referendum as I was in the UK at the time. My take was better the devil you know than the devil you don’t. We shall now have to wait and see, but my current take is there are real problems ahead.

    • BeaumontZodecloun says:

      Of course, there will be growing pains. Many countries besides the UK have been dealt a bad fiscal deal by the EU. With resolve and perseverance, the UK will be fine; after that, watch the eventual crumbling of the EU, as country after country pay for the right to leave and become, once again, self-determining.

  4. Anonymous says:

    We miss you Anwar Cho-cho!

  5. Anonymous says:

    I think Brexit is fantastic. All my fellow Brits who were dragged into the Common Market via deceptive means can truly celebrate their freedom from the undemocratic Euro-Tsars on their gravy train.
    Make Britain great again! Proud of the majority. Thank God for democracy. Can’t stand socialism. It never ends well.

    • Anon says:

      Before you start rejoicing, let’s wait and see how negotiations go. We still don’t know what they actually have planned. Personally I think it was the worst decision to leave the EU, but as I said before, let’s see what happens

    • BeaumontZodecloun says:

      You are right. True Socialism never works for the people, only the government, and their cronies.

  6. Anonymous says:

    These assurances ring a bit hollow given the still TBD terms of Mom’s divorce, economic impacts on their island, and knock-ons for ours. Our tiny BOT is increasingly. and disproportionately, being tagged-into their historic responsibilities as regional disaster first responders for their current and former colonies…for which we’ve been told to acquire a second chopper, form a coast guard, form a cadet corp, and local army regiment. Mom’s going to be busy – already swiping right on USA’s global profile.

  7. Anonymous says:

    I wonder who will be next. I spent a lot of time in Germany during 2014/15 and anti-EU feelings there were pretty evident. People there were even trading in D-Marks as a protest against the Euro. I also visited Holland and they weren’t exactly happy about either the EU or the Euro. In fact the Dutch claim their government has emergency plans in place to revert to the guilder. Then we have the French. Macron is rapidly becoming the most unpopular President in recent history and people are talking about ‘Frexit’.

    • Anon says:

      This is the sort of nonsense Brexit types spout fed by fake news from Russia and the alt right Americans. No other EU member has any interest in leaving and none will. The EU adds strength and the UK is much weaker outside than in.

      • Aristotle Onassis says:

        Utter rubbish. The Greeks have been giving the idea serious consideration for some time. Between Dart and the Germans they feel everyone is out to wreck their economy.

      • 345 dreaming says:

        Hmmmn what planet are you living on. Why dont you watch a few e.u parliament debates , then you may have a clue of which member states are celebrating brexit alongside U.K citizens.

        I work and live in Europe, magical place and certainly worth a visit or extended stay. But dont imagine for a second that it dosnt have a mountain of problems . Unelected corrupt leaders with multi national interests imposing more and more legislation, defeating local commerce, ignoring infrastructure, schools and inflation fast tracking leaving the minimum wage useless to those who desperately need relief. I am lucky to work and live in a city center but am surronded by povery and a growing criminal element….one that is not immediately local! Sorry but no one believes in the rosy glasses of the e.u anymore much less europeans.

  8. Sat it like it is says:

    Much ado about nothing all he said is what we already know, there will be no changes until completion of the implementation period at the end of the year.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Now give cayman it’s independence, it’s forever moaning about the UK, I don’t think London would object

    • Anonymous says:

      And kill the golden goose once and for all.

    • BeaumontZodecloun says:

      I think we are far too immature of a nation to prosper from independence. I think we have a symbiosis with the UK that both wish to perpetuate. It’s a good thing.

  10. Anon says:

    The bigots won in the end. These vacuous words mean nothing and are just hot air without any foundation.

    • Anonymous says:

      People don’t want to be controlled by unaccountable Brussels bureaucrats who have killed economic growth.

    • BeaumontZodecloun says:

      That is a popular narrative, albeit flawed. Do you really, truly, believe that most of Brexit was about people and borders?

      More to the point, do you truly believe that the majority of UK citizens are bigots? Really?

  11. Anonymous says:

    I would say we should start looking into independence if the UK’s going down a bad road, but I don’t want OUR freak show of a government to have complete power over us…
    I’m conflicted!

    • Anonymous says:

      Right, you could join Scotland or Jamaica.

    • BeaumontZodecloun says:

      Let’s think about playing the long game, yeah?

      We have a young government and territory. Our current government will soon change; it always does during periods of extreme conflict, as we’ve seen recently. So, before vying for independence, maybe we should invest in ourselves, promote that which is good and truthful here on the islands.

      I understand your conflict. Let’s watch and see the UK push through these terse times and prosper. We can do the same. We have to have the resolve to promote politicians who understand that they work for us, rather than us fighting for their table scraps, as we’ve done in the past.

  12. Anonymous says:

    I think BREXIT will be the downfall of the UK.

    It’s my opionion there were more pros than cons to remain a member state of the EU.

  13. Anonymous says:

    So which OT’s are dependent on EU aid? Certainly not this one. Gibraltar, maybe? No one cares.

  14. Anonymous says:

    Oh dear, guess I


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