BRUSSELS – Britain’s vote to leave the European Union has put the country’s role in Europe in limbo. Every day that passes deepens the impasse between the United Kingdom and the EU and makes the future more uncertain.
The EU leadership would like to move the process along and has called on the UK to immediately take steps to do so, as outlined in Article 50, the member-withdrawal provision of the Treaty of Lisbon.
The UK side is in disarray and first must choose a new leader now that Prime Minister David Cameron has announced his resignation. But most British politicians have come to accept the outcome of the “Brexit” referendum, and that the will of the voters must now be carried out in a manner that best upholds Britain’s national interests.
Because the EU’s internal market has always been a key priority for the UK, one widely discussed option, which has cross-party support, is the so-called the “Norway model”: membership in the European Economic Area (EEA).