British Consul on Mallorca attempts to allay UK expat Brexit fears

Published:  5 Sep at 6 PM
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A meeting between concerned British expats living in Mallorca and the British Consul General was arranged to give expats a chance to express their fears and concerns over the Brexit referendum result

.Consul General Lloyd Milen and Vice-Consul Lucy Gorman joined newly-appointed Deputy Head of Mission Tim Hemmings and a selection of the island’s UK expat residents at the Pollensa Town Hall in order to clarify issues relating to the UK’s departure from the European Union. The audience included business owners, representatives of local charities and associations, retirees and other British residents.

The main issues discussed were healthcare, the right to remain in Spain and the effect of Brexit on UK state pensions. Initially quoting the oft-repeated obvious, Hemmings assured the British residents no changes would take place until after the UK’s final withdrawal from the EU after exit negotiations were completed. Describing the strong links between Spain and Britain, he added the British government would try its best to ensure a satisfactory outcome for UK citizens in Spain.

The consulate team did their best to reassure the audience over credible ongoing information as regards developments which might affect them, and advised all expats to regularly check online at the Spanish and UK government websites. Given the paucity of concrete information at present issuing from the UK government, it’s to be hoped a majority of UK expats in Spain can read Spanish in order to check their host government’s website.

Previous 'credible' information in that the rights of British expats to remain in their adopted countries would depend on Britain’s agreeing to at least some freedom of movement for EU citizens in the UK doesn’t seem to convey the reassurances given at the meeting. On Monday, UK media reported on the British Prime Minister’s refusal to discuss the issue of EU expats in the UK. Should life be made extremely difficult for them, it’s likely their home country governments would be less than inclined to treat UK expats with generosity.
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