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The referendum


When is the referendum going to be held?

Answer

The referendum will be held on June 23rd 2016.

Last updated: Feb 18, 2016

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Who is eligible to vote?

Answer
  • British or Gibraltar citizens living in the UK;
  • British or Gibraltar citizens living overseas for less than 15 years;
  • Irish, Commonwealth, and British Overseas Territory citizens living in the UK.
    EU Citizens resident in the UK CANNOT vote;
  • unless they are from Cyprus or Malta, which are also members of the Commonwealth
  • or they hold dual British nationality

For more information, visit the About my Vote website. You can also register to vote on this website.

Last updated: Feb 18, 2016

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Why are we having a referendum?

Answer

The Prime Minister promised in 2013 to reform Britain’s relationship with the EU and put it to the British people when the reforms were complete.

We are confident that his ambitious reform programme will be successful and we will be ready to campaign for keeping Britain stronger in Europe whenever the vote is called.

Last updated: Feb 18, 2016

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How can I vote?

Answer

You will be able to vote by post or on polling day. For further information please see the Electoral Commission website.

Last updated: Feb 18, 2016

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What are my voting choices?

Answer
You will be able to vote between Britain remaining a member of the EU or leaving the EU.
Those arguing that Britain should remain a member of the EU believe that we have the best of both worlds. We enjoy the benefits of being part of EU including the economic partnership that means jobs and lower prices for your family, but have opted out of those parts that are not in our national interests including the Schengen open-borders agreement and the Eurozone.
Those campaigning for Britain to leave would put the benefits of EU membership at risk. 

Last updated: Feb 18, 2016

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Where do the political parties stand on the EU?

Answer

The leaders of all the major political parties are in favour of Britain remaining a member of a reformed EU. The Labour party, the Liberal Democrats, Scottish National Party and the Green parties are all officially campaigning for Britain to remain in the EU. 

Last updated: Feb 18, 2016

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What happens after the vote is held?

Answer
This depends on the result. If Britain opts to remain a member of the EU we will implement our reforms to strengthen our economy and protect our national interests. This would mean more economic growth meaning more financial stability for your family, more opportunities for you and your children to get on in life, and cheaper prices on everything from your supermarket shop and fuel to your household bills.
If Britain opts to leave Europe we will immediately begin negotiations with the European Commission about our exit from the European Union. This vote is irreversible.

Last updated: Feb 18, 2016

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When will I start to feel the effects of the vote?

Answer
If Britain votes to remain a member of the EU we will continue to feel the economic benefits of being in Europe. 
If Britain votes to leave Europe the economic damage will be long-term, though we would all feel the economic hit within the next few months. It would cost you more to put food on the table and fill up your car. Redundancies made by UK and foreign businesses after being taken out of the EU single market means there would be fewer jobs on the market for you and your family.  

Last updated: Feb 18, 2016

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What is the European Union?

Answer
The European Union is the organisation in which 28 European nations cooperate on economic matters, in order to improve the living standards of 500 million EU citizens. The EU also facilitates common action over cross-border issues such as climate change, security and counter-terrorism and protecting workers’ rights.
EU measures and policies are planned by civil servants from all 28 member states in the European Commission, then debated by the MEPs you vote for in the European Parliament, then signed off by our government’s ministers when they meet at the Council of Ministers. 
 
Key to the EU is the single market, in which countries have common regulations and no tariffs, which mean they can easily trade goods and services. More than a million UK businesses are linked to trade with the EU, which allows them to grow and employ more people – more than 3 million jobs are linked to the EU. Competition across the single market drives down the costs you pay in UK shops and gives you and your family more opportunities because it creates more jobs.

Last updated: Feb 18, 2016

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Who are our representatives in the EU?

Answer
In the Council of Ministers, which passes laws together with the European Parliament, British people are represented by our democratically elected UK Government Ministers, who discuss and decide the big issues on trade and cooperation in Europe together with our European friends and allies.
The European Parliament has a vital role in scrutinising and passing EU legislation, and our MEPs are directly elected by the British people. Along with Germany and France, the UK has the largest number of MEPs in the European Parliament. This is a great position of influence, and it is sad to see that so many UKIP MEPs are wasting it by not showing up to vote.
And in the European Commission Britain is represented by our Commissioner Lord Hill, who is tasked with financial services and is opening up capital markets to make it easier for small businesses to access finance. There are also British civil servants in every department in the European Commission.

Last updated: Feb 18, 2016

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