Brit expats fearing further sterling falls if election brings hung parliament

Published:  6 Dec at 6 PM
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British expats living overseas could see yet another sterling crash if a hung parliament is the result of the upcoming general election.

UK expats living on their state pensions in Europe and other favourite retirement destinations are having a tough time since the pound fell against a basket of other currencies including the Euro, the US dollar and several Asian currencies such as the Thai baht. Any further devaluation of sterling could mean elderly expats are forced to choose between paying rentals, service bills and medical costs where applicable or buying food.

Sadly, hundreds of thousands of Brits who’re affected right now by the politically-charged currency fluctuation won’t have the right to a vote as they’ve been living outside the UK for more than 15 years. Expats as well as pundits are now calling the upcoming vote the ‘Brexit election’, as a hung parliament would almost certainly lead to a second referendum and the possibility that Brexit would be summarily cancelled as a result.

Contrary to the belief that the vast majority of Brit expats in EU member states are retirees, almost 80 per cent are of working age and are also feeling the pinch of the sterling exchange rate against the euro unless they’re at managerial levels and being paid accordingly. The issue of the 15-year disenfranchisement had been raised more than once in the Commons’ but has never been dealt with in spite of considerable support by MPs.

The failure to right this wrong has sparked an outcry, but it’s also galvanised some 38,000 British citizens overseas to register for the vote, bringing the total to more than 300,000, some ten times the number registered in 2015. Given that the majority are unlikely to vote for the Tory promise that Brexit is set in tablets of stone, the next few days or so should be very interesting.
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