The UK referendum on EU membership resulted in a vote to leave the bloc. The UK and EU are currently in limbo whilst the withdrawing Member State prepares to trigger Article 50 and formally notify its intent to depart. The financial, legal and economic implications are expected to be wide-ranging although the process of unpicking the interlinkages across different policy areas has not yet begun. In the case of Cohesion Policy, the negotiation of an end date for eligibility and the extent to which the established regulatory procedures around N+3 and programme closure will be applied to the departing UK will be crucial, not only in determining the exact financial ‘hit’ to UK regions of Brexit but also in terms of implications for programming on the ground. Regulatory specificities mean that the withdrawal process could be characterized by regions who voted to leave the EU still spending their EU allocations and required to comply with EU law long after UK withdrawal.

Woolford Implications of Brexit for UK ESIF programming and future regional policy

The opinions presented here are the author's own and do not necessarily represent the views of the Regional Studies Association