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Burt prepared to wait on Brexit verdict

Deal or no deal: David Burt is due in London this month for talks (File photograph by Akil Simmons)

As Brexit looms for Britain, with question marks hanging over a deal over its divorce from Europe, the Bermuda Government stated last night that nothing would change in the island’s relationship.

David Burt, the Premier, is scheduled to hear more on Brexit this month during a trip to London. It came as an unpopular draft deal for the withdrawal from the European Union sparked political turmoil yesterday for Theresa May, the British Prime Minister.

May’s Cabinet was beset by ministerial resignations, and the pound dropped against the dollar and the euro.

A tentative Brexit deal would include a 21-month transition period after the exit date of March 29, 2019.

But May’s draft agreement with Europe appeared to have slim hopes of winning approval in the British Parliament — raising the spectre of a no-deal exit, which would scupper any transition.

British trade would be subject to EU tariffs and cross-border travel would likely revert to the days of Customs and passport checks.

With Bermuda’s legal and business framework tethered to Britain, its departure from Europe has been closely watched.

However, a government spokeswoman said: “Any Brexit deal or a no Brexit deal scenario will have no impact on the constitutional relationship between Britain and its Overseas Territories.

“Any protection of citizen’s rights under the withdrawal agreement will equally apply to Bermudians with British Citizenship.”

She added: “The Premier will be attending the Joint Ministerial Council in London later this month and as part of the agenda for those meetings will be hearing directly from the Prime Minister or a representative of Her Majesty’s Government on Brexit.”