Brexit's Ripple Effect: How It's Shaping Europe & International Relations

Brexit's Ripple Effect: How It's Shaping Europe & International Relations

The United Kingdom’s decision to leave the European Union (EU) in the 2016 Brexit referendum not only shocked the world, but it also set off a chain of events whose impact is still being felt today. The referendum result, which was a narrow victory for the “Leave” camp, was the beginning of a period of uncertainty and change for the UK and the EU as a whole.

The political, economic, and social impacts of Brexit have been far-reaching, with the most significant effects on the UK’s economy, trade, immigration policies, and diplomatic relations with its European neighbors. The ripple effect of Brexit is also felt beyond the EU, with potential changes in global trade, security cooperation, and international alliances.

In this post, we will explore the various ways that Brexit has affected Europe and its place in the world. We will delve into the political, economic, and social implications of Brexit not only for the UK and the EU but also for other regions of the world that are closely watching the situation unfold.

Impact of Brexit on European Economy

The European economy has been significantly impacted by Brexit, with trade relations between the UK and EU coming under increased scrutiny. The UK was a significant economic contributor to the EU, and its departure has left a significant void. The uncertainty regarding future trade agreements has created a sense of unease among businesses, and many have moved their operations to other EU member states. The financial services sector has been particularly hard hit, with several banks relocating their businesses to other European cities. These economic changes have led to a lack of confidence in the EU’s economy, which has been further exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic.

One significant impact of Brexit on the European economy has been the disruption to supply chains. Many industries rely on goods and services sourced from the UK, and the uncertainty surrounding Brexit has led to an interruption in the supply chain. This has caused delays and increased costs for businesses, particularly those in the automotive industry. Several large automobile manufacturers have already moved their operations to other European countries as a result of Brexit, and many more are expected to follow suit. This shift in industries could have long-term implications for the European economy, as it may lead to a re-evaluation of the EU’s economic policies and trade agreements with other countries.

Brexit's Impact on Diplomatic Relations

The UK’s decision to leave the EU has also had significant implications for its diplomatic relations with its European neighbors and countries outside the EU. Since the referendum, there has been a noticeable shift in the UK’s relationships with other countries, particularly those in the EU. The UK’s departure from the EU has left a void, which has been filled by countries such as Germany and France. The UK’s place in the world, both economically and politically, has been questioned, and its ability to negotiate favorable trade deals has been called into question.

The Brexit negotiations have also put a strain on the UK's relationship with Ireland, particularly in relation to the Northern Ireland border issue. The UK’s decision to leave the EU has put the Good Friday Agreement at risk, and there are fears that it could lead to a resurgence of sectarian violence. The relationship between the UK and Ireland, which has always been complex, has been severely tested by Brexit.

Brexit's Impact on Immigration Policies

Brexit has led to significant changes in the UK’s immigration policies. The UK government has introduced several measures to restrict immigration, particularly from the EU. The government’s aim is to reduce the number of immigrants and prioritize skilled workers. The introduction of a points-based system, which gives priority to people with high skills and qualifications, is one of the most significant changes to UK immigration policy.

Brexit has also led to changes in the status of EU citizens living in the UK. Before Brexit, EU citizens could live and work in the UK without any restriction. However, following Brexit, EU citizens must apply for settled status if they wish to remain in the UK. This change has had significant implications, particularly for people in the UK who are married to EU citizens. The UK's departure from the EU has also led to a reduction in the number of UK citizens living and working in EU countries, given that many people had to leave the EU or apply for residency permits.

Brexit's Impact on the United Kingdom

The main impact of Brexit has been on the United Kingdom itself. The decision to leave the EU has led to a period of uncertainty, instability, and division within the country. The UK government has faced significant challenges in negotiating a deal with the EU, with disagreements over issues such as trade, fishing rights, and the Northern Ireland border. The transition period following Brexit has also been challenging, with the COVID-19 pandemic adding an extra layer of complexity.

Brexit has also led to concerns over the future of the UK's integrity. Scotland and Northern Ireland both voted to remain in the EU, and the decision to leave has led to renewed calls for independence. The Scottish National Party has been particularly vocal about the issue, and there are fears that Scotland could leave the UK in the future. The Northern Ireland border issue has also put strain on the relationship between Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK, and has led to concerns that it could lead to a revival of violence in the region.

Brexit's Impact on Global Trade and Security

Brexit has also had significant repercussions on global trade and security. The UK's decision to leave the EU has created uncertainty regarding future trade agreements, with questions raised about the status of the UK’s relationship with other major global economies. The UK government has begun negotiations with several countries, including the US, Australia, and Japan, with the aim of forming new trade agreements. However, these negotiations have been slow to progress, and it remains to be seen what will be achieved.

Brexit has also raised concerns about security cooperation between the UK and other countries, particularly those within the EU. The UK was an active participant in several EU security initiatives, including Europol and the European Arrest Warrant. However, since Brexit, the UK has left these initiatives, leading to concerns about the effectiveness of future security cooperation between the UK and the EU.

Final Notes

Overall, Brexit has had far-reaching consequences, not only for the United Kingdom but also for the European Union and the rest of the world. Some of the most significant effects of Brexit have been on the economy, immigration policies, diplomatic relations, and global trade and security. As the UK continues to navigate its new relationship with the EU, it is clear that the effects of Brexit will be felt for many years to come.

Here are the key takeaways from this post:

  1. Brexit has had a significant impact on the UK economy, particularly the financial services sector.
  2. The disruption to supply chains has caused delays and increased costs for businesses in the automotive industry.
  3. The effect of Brexit on diplomatic relations with the EU and Ireland, as well as its place in the world, are still being questioned.
  4. New UK immigration policies prioritize skilled workers and require EU citizens to apply for settled status to remain in the UK.
  5. Brexit has led to concerns about the UK’s integrity, particularly in relation to Northern Ireland and Scotland.
  6. There have been obstacles in the negotiations between the UK and other countries regarding trade and security initiatives.

Overall, Brexit has been a significant and divisive issue for the UK and the EU. As the situation continues to evolve, it remains to be seen what the long-term effects will be.


  1. Brexit: All you need to know about the UK leaving the EU. (2021, June 3). BBC News. Retrieved from

  2. Hughes, K. (2021, June 15). Brexit: What has changed since the UK left the EU? Sky News. Retrieved from

  3. Hunt, A. (2021, May 20). Brexit: How has it impacted trade with the EU and beyond? CNBC. Retrieved from

Additional References: The impact of Brexit on Europe and international relations


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