A catastrophe or a revolution? The opinion is divided similarly to the referendum last Thursday. The world witnessed one of the biggest financial events as it took place through the ballot. The terms “Yes and No” had never been so important. People were drenched in water casting their vote; it was hard to say whether it was the rain or the sweat rolling down their cheeks. Thunderstorms and flash floods created chaos while the fate of 64 million Britons and many others was decided. I would hear voices, whispers, opinions and suggestions about how dead the Britain will be once it leaves the most powerful trading bloc in the world. The Vote Remain and the Vote Leave gained more popularity than the Game of Thrones. Well, it would be brutal if I compare the reality with the outstanding fiction of George R.R. Martin.
It was Friday, the twenty-fourth when the vote count began, and the world witnessed a dramatic exit of the United Kingdom from the European Union with 51.9% in favour of Leave and 48.1% which chose to remain. The Judgement Day had passed, and it was the beginning of a new era in the British history. Some of them had tears of joy while others were full of disgust of being a British citizen.
“We should be proud of making June 23rd our Independence Day”, said Nigel Farag, the leader of the United Kingdom Independence party. While the Leavers celebrated their day of Independence, the markets plummeted to historic lows. FTSE 100, the benchmark index of UK crashed up to eight percent wiping almost £120 billion from the market. The UK stocks hit a seven-year low where the banking and the real estate sectors faced significant losses. The pound sterling nosedived to 1.3260 levels- the lowest in 31 years. The gold prices rallied up to 5% while USD/JPY recorded a low of 99.30. European markets fell too and so did the US, but equities pared some losses before the close, TGIF (Thank God! It was Friday). Mark Carney, the chairman of the Bank Of England announced a further addition of £200 billion pounds to UK’s current stimulus programme.
David Cameron announced his resignation at 10, downing street just after a year in office. Apparently, he was shattered with the outcome. However, now, winter is coming in the UK. The elections will take place in October. Boris Johnson is being considered to be the most rightful heir of the iron throne right now. There are some more in the queue like Michale Gove, chancellor George Osborne and the “REMAIN” campaigners such as Theresa May and Sajid Javid. The question of the hour is; will the new leader of the Britain get the same chair? The answer is yes; he will get the same chair but not the same country.
Does Scottish referendum in 2014 ring any bells? Scotland always wanted to be in the European Union, the first minister Nicola Sturgeon was very clear about it. So clear, that the Scottish people attained a good majority in the favour of staying in EU. Northern Ireland also voted to remain under the umbrella of the most powerful trading bloc in the world. The city of London bowed their hats in favour of staying, but Whales and rest of the England had revolutionary plans for the future. The United Kingdom is divided not only in the territory but in opinions and thoughts too. The SNP (Scottish Nationalist Party) is itching to have a second referendum for Independence. Moreover, this time, they are likely to succeed.
Meanwhile, the applications for an online petition to set London free also emerged. People in London wanted UK to stay and continue the privileges of being a member of the EU. According to a poll, the majority of individuals who voted to exit were of age 65 and above which has made the fresh blood furious.
The EU leaders and especially France want the UK to pack their stuff and secure the boundaries as soon as possible. However, brits would need more time to negotiate their exit. They could have the same arrangement as Switzerland and Norway have.
However, all this would require time which can be obtained by implementing Article 50 in action. But, who will trigger the article into action? David Cameron is not going to take any part in the post-referendum procedures. He sacrificed his job so that the UK will get 3 more months before the election and the new prime minister triggers the article 50 giving Britain more time for negotiations on the exit.
There are also many businesses which will be getting affected after the exit. Asian car makers like Toyota and Nissan are shaken by the vote and have warned that a period of uncertainty will prevail before the UK negotiates the trade and labour deals with Europe. Toyota produced about 190,000 cars in Britain last year, of which 75% went to the European Union. Jaguar Land Rover has estimated its annual profit could shrink by £1 billion pounds by 2020 if Britain returns to World Trade Organization rules for trade with Europe.
United States of America had apparently accommodated their stance of giving preference to the EU when it would come to trade agreements. Moreover, the UK will be standing last in the queue as their trading ally.
IS EU still a Union?
However, what about the European Union? The fears that exit of UK will lead to a domino effect in EU might be of a concern now. Greece and Italy already have anti-EU populist who may surge now. Spain is preparing for the second election in six months after creating a political deadlock in December elections. The surprise vote of Britain has added to the uncertainty with the Popular Party, which insists on rejecting the EU-backed austerity measures.
France is expected to spread more about the EU integration among the members. President Francois Holland said on Friday he would make proposals to ensure the EU moved forward on the main remits of security and defence, investment for growth and jobs, and reinforcing the Eurozone.
However, he also insisted it cannot be business as usual for the EU and deep changes must be made.
The shocking exit of Britain has sparked many Anti-EU bodies within the European Union. Geert Wilders the leader of the Dutch anti-immigrant PVV party said on Friday that “The Netherlands should hold its own referendum on whether to leave the European Union following Britain’s vote in favour of exiting the bloc.”
From politics to sports everything will be burnt in the ashes of Brexit. The premier league will not be the same after Thursday. Each minute thing from the free movement of players to their earnings and contracts will be in jeopardy until the negotiations happen. Maybe, the dawn which Brits were looking for was a black hole after all. I just hope that the Brexit does not turns into a “BREGRET”