Life After Article 50
The triggering of article 50 last month saw the beginning of a long and complicated process of withdrawal from the EU for Britain. Spain is home to 260,000 UK nationals, of which 90% are residents of the Balearic islands, Canary islands and Costas. Despite concerns for the future outside Europe and a reduction in spending power of around 10%, UK citizens remain enthusiastic about property purchase in Spain and the islands.
One in every five Spanish properties sold to foreigners during 2015 was bought by a UK national, this figure has fallen slightly, but the trend has not been completely reversed and it would seem that British buyers are simply showing more caution in considering properties that better suit their pockets. Therefore a great number of expats are still seeking answers to questions over life after the EU and wanting to know how Britain’s split from Europe will affect residency rights and healthcare Following UK Prime Minister, Theresa May’s historic move on March 29th negotiations will begin on the way forward with Brexit, however any withdrawal agreement will need to be approved by at least 72% of the remaining 27 EU countries.
(picture courtesy of lawgazette.co.uk)
European Union politicians have warned that it may be 2022 before the UK is completely clear of the EU. The British Ambassador to Spain, Simon Manley, gave a speech reassuring expats that their interests and rights will be protected during the process. “One of our top priorities for the negotiations is our citizens, and there will be no immediate changes to expat rights here in Spain in the interim”. Mr Manley told the press. Adding: “You can continue to access Spanish healthcare and your UK pension and your children can continue to attend Spanish schools.”
A draft response from MEPs to the triggering of article 50 says; “Transitional arrangements ensuring legal certainty and continuity can only be agreed between the United Kingdom if they contain the right balance of rights and obligations for both parties.: Meanwhile the Ambassador advised all British citizens residing in Spain to register on their local padron in order to access local services and to contact the British Consulate in case of any difficulty excercising rights which, at present, remain completely unchanged.
(main picture courtesy of openeurope.org.uk)
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