Channel Islands governments: expect no change immediately after Brexit

Channel Islands governments say there will be no immediate change in the wake of the UK leaving the European Union.

The UK will legally leave the EU at 11.00pm on Friday 31 January, when the transition period will begin. Negotiations will then start on a future trade deal on Saturday 1 February.

Guernsey's Chief Minister, Deputy Gavin St Pier, says that while there will be no immediate changes for islanders on day one of Brexit, the next phase of the process could be much more complex.

Deputy Gavin St Pier, says that while there will be no immediate changes for islanders on day one of Brexit, the next phase of the process could be much more complex. Credit: ITV Channel TV

I think in many ways it will be a non-event but we are now at the beginning of the next stage of the process which in itself is going to be quite challenging.

Deputy Gavin St Pier, Guernsey's Chief Minister

Senator Ian Gorst, Jersey's External Relations Minister, says the government has been planning for all outcomes of Brexit since the result of the referendum was confirmed in June 2016.

Senator Ian Gorst, Jersey's External Relations Minister, says the government has been planning for all outcomes of Brexit since the result of the referendum was confirmed in June 2016. Credit: ITV Channel TV

Now that the UK is leaving the European Union with a transition period in place, Islanders will not see any changes in their ability to travel to, or trade with, the European Union. The status quo will continue until 31 December 2020, by which time a new relationship between the UK and EU should be in place. My team is still working to ensure that Jersey’s interests are represented as the UK Government negotiates its future relationship with the EU. The Brexit Unit will focus on international trade, building on our Brexit and Global Markets objectives, and promoting and protecting Jersey’s international identity and reputation.

Senator Ian Gorst, Jersey's External Relations Minister

Our reporter Charlotte Gay has been to meet some EU residents who have made Guernsey their home and if their concerned about how Brexit:

The Channel Islands are not members of the European Union, but can currently trade freely with them - thanks to a clause in the UK's membership.

The 11 month Transition Period that starts at 11pm on 31 January will allow the UK and EU to work out their future relationship.

During that period, nothing drastic will change but come the start of 2021, processes and procedures could be very different for businesses in the UK and those in the Channel Islands when trading with the EU.

ITV Channel TV's Political Correspondent, Clare Burton, has been meeting business owners in Jersey to see how trade could be affected once Brexit finally takes place: