Background of Brexit

1. Brexit timeline

Brexit originated from the Brexit Referendum on June 23, 2016 and triggered Article 50 on March 29, 2017, which stipulates that the UK shall complete Brexit within 2 years. During this period, there were three postponements, and finally the time for Brexit was set to January 31, 2020. Moreover, the UK obtained a transition period ending December 31, 2020 after Brexit.

2. What is special about Brexit

In the process of Brexit, one problem is how to deal with the cross-border trade between Northern Ireland and Ireland (member states of the EU). A plan has been drawn up to treat Northern Ireland and Great Britain (England, Wales, and Scotland) differently from a regulatory perspective to prevent the side effects of the “hard border” between Ireland and Northern Ireland. 


Two concepts need to be explained here:

UNITED KINGDOM covers England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland;

GREAT BRITAIN covers England, Scotland and Wales.