- Reset + PDFPrint

President Ilves: the leaders of the European Union Member States must decide fast – what next


President Toomas Hendrik Ilves:

"The citizens of the United Kingdom have cast their votes in the public referendum. Their decision is a disappointment for both the European Union and me personally, but, of course, the remaining 27 member states will accept it.

It is impossible to predict the full political and economic impact that the decision to leave will have on the United Kingdom and the European Union. I personally hope that it will have a unifying effect on EU27.

It is quite clear that the rest of the member states will develop their approach and attitude towards both the outcome of the British referendum and the events arising today. The turbulence that will hit the financial markets as a result of the referendum will soon create a new reality. The faster the leaders of the European Union Member States decide on what should be done next, the stronger the future European Union will be and the smaller the damage caused by the referendum of the United Kingdom will be on EU citizens.

We should also not forget that the United Kingdom will remain a part of the western value environment, as well as its economics and security. This will serve the interests of us all.

The status of the United Kingdom in the European Union will not immediately change. Their government is due to submit an application to leave under Article 50 of the Lisbon Agreement, which will be followed by leaving negotiations between the United Kingdom and the remaining 27 Member States of the European Union, which are estimated to last for about two years."

Office of the President
Public Relations Department