Brexit begins

When UK PM Theresa May triggers the Brexit process today to exit the European Union, she will be taking the first step in a two-year process that has little clarity


UK Prime Minister Theresa May will start the Brexit process on Wednesday. Photo: Reuters
UK Prime Minister Theresa May will start the Brexit process on Wednesday. Photo: Reuters

When British Prime Minister Theresa May triggers Brexit today, she will be taking the first step in a two-year process that has little clarity. There is currently no agreement between London and Brussels on core issues.

For instance, London wants the terms of the exit and a future trade deal to be negotiated concurrently while Brussels wishes to resolve the former before moving on to the latter.

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In addition, Germany, perhaps the European Union power most sympathetic to the UK, is also beginning to harden its stance.

This lack of clarity will impact Indian businesses too, although it is difficult to make predictions.

Those of the 800-plus Indian businesses operating in the UK that see it as a gateway to European operations will be worried. Automobile, pharmaceutical and IT companies will be particularly affected here. Others will benefit from a weakening pound. And the UK’s interest in strengthening trade with India is certainly a plus.

It’s shaping up to be a long—and uncertain—two years.

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