BSRIA has welcomed the UK government announcing the triggering of Article 50, starting the two-year process for Brexit.
Article 50 is a small section contained within The Treaty of Lisbon which brought together The Maastricht Treaty (and the amending Amsterdam and Nice Treaties) and the Rome Treaty into a single legal agreement, forming the constitutional basis for the European Union.
It sets out the terms for a member of the EU withdrawing from the union. It states that any member of the EU may choose at any time to withdraw from the union. It must begin by notifying the European Council of its decision, this is what is referred to as ‘triggering’ Article 50.
Once Article 50 is triggered the withdrawing nation and the European Council must negotiate terms of withdrawal, as well as a plan for the nation’s future relationship with the EU. During this time all European Treaties, laws and regulations will still apply to the withdrawing nation until the withdrawal agreement comes into force or after two years has elapsed.
The issue of withdrawal from the EU is unprecedented and new ground both for Britain and the EU. There are many “tricky” issues to deal with and this is not helped by the vague and limited wording of Article 50.
Julia Evans, BSRIA Chief Executive, said:“There has been much chaos and mixed-messages surrounding Brexit since June last year so BSRIA welcomes today’s announcement that Article 50 will be triggered. We trust that this will bring much-needed clarity and order in the ongoing Brexit debate.
“The specifics of which EU rules and regulations the UK will be able to ‘keep’ remain to be seen and are evidentially up for negotiation. What industry does need is strong leadership to bring economic confidence and stability, avoiding a disruptive cliff-edge.
“Indeed, as we move forward, we must not lose sight of the fact that it is crucial that the construction industry’s voice is heard in the Brexit deliberations. What is evident is that the ‘construction industry is open for business’.
“As highlighted in a recently-published Brexit White Paper, created from BSRIA member feedback, industry faces skills and labour shortages, therefore, members and industry will be pleased with this step in the right direction for such transparency.
“In this respect, it is critical that industry has access to the skilled and semi-skilled workers it needs to succeed.
“BSRIA has launched a Brexit Topic Guide to cut through some of the smoke and mirrors surrounding Brexit. The At a Glance Guide offers quick facts and key issues on a myriad of need to know issues.
“From the free movement of EU nationals, visa applications, the impact on skills and training and the Supreme Court ruling to a Brexit FAQ, the role of the Department for Exiting the EU, the Canada, Norway and Swiss Model and what happens to EU legislation?”