Brexit 'has made other countries less likely to leave the EU' - expert claims

Press quote (Yahoo News)
08 January 2019

A leading EU expert has argued that Brexit has made it less likely that other countries will leave the Union. Charles Grant, director of the Centre for European Reform, believes the protracted debate and the problems encountered by Theresa May in gathering support for her deal will have “put off” other countries from following suit.

Speaking on Twitter Mr Grant said: “The big lesson of Brexit is that any country trying to leave will find the process much more complicated, difficult and expensive than anyone imagined. “The Brits have probably inoculated others against trying to pursue the same path for at least a generation.”

Mr Grant’s theory is in line with figures who have played a leading role in Britain’s Brexit process but at odds with a cast of international politicians.

Mr Grant argued the difficulties faced by Mrs May over unexpected difficulties, such as the Irish border, will prove a strong deterrent to other Eurosceptic countries.

He said: “Another country leaving the EU won’t have to grapple with the Irish border. But once May had agreed in Dec 17 that, for the sake of the peace process, there shouldn’t be a hard border between NI & the Republic, NI had to have some sort of regulatory union with the EU.”