Explain Like I’m Five: How Does Brexit Affect India?


We stumbled upon an excellent Reddit thread that explains the implications of Britain’s exit (Brexit) from the European Union. Let’s deconstruct the main reasons.

To begin with, The primary reason UK is leaving is because of the rise of the UKIP (the United Kingdom Independence Party) which has previously campaigned on, and seen moderate success, on idea of the UK leaving Europe. Its principal argument is around the unaccountability of the largely unelected officials of the EU, the fact that the European Court has sovereignty over UK courts, and on immigration.

It’s worth pointing out here the big, big issue that has acted as stimulant is that most voters who’ve voted to Leave the EU mostly care about immigration. The EU Human Rights court has time and again called BS on UK’s stand on deporting ‘alleged terrorists’, which is mostly accusations by UK right-wing tabloids.

The main political parties had no discernable position on almost all of these issues, but they were at the heart of a significant number of UK voter’s hearts. UKIP stole ground from the major parties over the past few years on these issues and gained seats on councils and in Parliament; the other parties took notice and put together a position on each issue.

Meanwhile, Disquiet with the EU’s power and unaccountability grew even among its fans, and the Conservative Party’s (the governing party in the UK) manifesto at the last election contained a commitment to hold a referendum on Britain remaining in our out of the the EU before 2018. David Cameron promised to negotiate for a whole raft of reforms, but returned from Europe in February empty-handed. Today’s referendum is the result.

Why should you care as a non-resident of the UK? You should care because, as one of the world’s largest economies, what happens in the UK affects global markets. Also, if the UK votes ‘Brexit’ (we’re hearing that it has), it is thought that a large number of other constituent countries will follow suit. Several are holding referenda after Britain. Depending if/how many leave, the EU as we know it could break apart. Then, all bets are off.

For us Indians, we’ll find it harder than before to immigrate to the UK as they’ll come up with their own policies on the issue. Also, we will see smaller changes too – like price fluctuations in British import goods, etc.

So there you have it. This is what’s happening right now. If you have friends struggling to understand the issue, link them to this article.

Update: The Rupee has cracked under the pressure in early Friday trade, according to Forbes Magazine. Read the full article here.