Brit expats overseas caught in coronavirus and Brexit turmoil

Brit expats overseas caught in coronavirus and Brexit turmoil

Brit expats overseas caught in coronavirus and Brexit turmoil

For British expats in Spain and all Brits who were planning to relocate by the end of this year, the UK government’s shambolic reaction to Brexit and the pandemic are causes for anger at the very least.

If you’re a would-be British expat or already overseas, it seems planning for a new life is now impossible, at least for the foreseeable future. The government’s reaction to the pandemic is a shambles and Brexit negotiations are stalled, leaving citizens with nothing to do and nowhere to go. Experts believe the British economy is heading for the worst recession in living memory, and many of those hoping to live, work or retire overseas have all but given up.

This year was expected to see rational discussions on the details of Brexit, with the government focused on getting the best deal possible along the lines of the 2016 referendum itself. Even although there was a possibility that discussions could at least be delayed until the pandemic is overcome, Johnson and his cronies are pushing ahead in spite of the goal posts being moved almost out of sight along with the huge number of infections and deaths as well as the expected financial meltdown.

Those Brits who’d already decided the UK without the EU wasn’t right for them are now either stuck without a plan B or are giving up entirely as the way forward doesn’t seem to exist. Right now, the EU is fixated on comprehensive fishing rights and the British government and its PM obviously don’t have any satisfactory answers. The holy grail of the Brexit referendum is now tarnished beyond recognition and contains empty promises rather than its gloriously independent future portrayed as the result of independence.

The first to suffer from this overwhelming indifference will be those British expats already living their preferred lives in EU member states. The majority of the most popular destination for Brits, especially retirees, have already made sympathetic noises aimed at reassuring the hundreds of thousands of UK residents terrified they’ll lose their homes, jobs and businesses as well as their rights. The UK’s efforts to reassure its EU expat residents haven’t done the job, with just seven months to go before the EU door closes, possibly for ever. The worse it is for immigrants, the worse it will be made for British expatriates.

Teetering on top of the above and about to fall is the worst UK recession in the past century, with its devastating effect on every British citizen wherever he or she is living at this moment. It’s understandable that many more UK nationals would take the chance to get out of what’s clearly a burning building, and the EU member states aren’t the only or even the best locations for building new lives. Choices made now need to be made carefully, but can and will result in individual successes. Rome may have burned, and so may the UK, but not everyone will be caught in the conflagration.

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