British Prime Minister Theresa May said on Sunday she would trigger the process to leave the EU by the end of March, offering the first glimpse of a timetable for a divorce that will redefine Britain’s ties with its biggest trading partner.
Britain’s shock vote to leave the European Union in June propelled May to power and the former interior minister has been under pressure to offer more details on her plan for departure, beyond an often-repeated catchphrase that “Brexit means Brexit”.
In a move to ease fears among her ruling Conservatives that she may delay the divorce, May told the party’s annual conference in Birmingham, central England, that she was determined to move on with the process and win the “right deal”.
Using Article 50 of the EU’s Lisbon Treaty will give Britain a two-year period to clinch one of the most complex deals in Europe since World War Two.
So March 2019 is the likely month the UK will exit the EU – 46 years after it joined.