Following the Referendum in June 2016, the UK Government has begun the process of leaving the EU. This is due to happen on 29 March 2019, although there will be a ‘transition period’ until 31 December 2020. Negotiations are continuing on the future relationship between the UK and the EU. As Brexit moves forward we will update the website as information becomes available.
Preparing for Brexit
Leaving the EU will have implications for Dundee City Council, its partners and the city as a whole. To prepare for this, the Council has established a Brexit Advisory Team to advise members on how to mitigate the impact of Brexit and take advantage of any opportunities which arise. The Council’s spokesperson on Europe is also chairing a cross party group of councillors, MSPs and MPs to monitor developments and lobby to protect the city’s interests. Issues for Dundee include the impact on EU citizens living and working in the city, the ending of EU funding for projects and uncertainty about replacement funding, implications for the workforce of the Council and other major employers, and impact on the local economy, including on businesses and academic institutions. More details are given in the following reports:
The Scottish Government has also created a website to give people information and guidance to help them prepare for EU exit.
The Rights of EU Citizens
The Council is particularly keen to make sure that EU citizens living and working in Dundee - we estimate around 10,000 - are informed about their rights. Along with the Scottish Government, we hosted an event to hear their concerns and we will provide more information locally as the scheme for EU citizens and their families to secure their long-term status in the UK is implemented. There is information on the Home Office website about the scheme. Applications can be made now although the scheme will not be fully open until 30 March. The Government has announced that there will be no fee when the scheme fully opens - if people apply before then, they will have to pay but have this refunded.
EU Citizens can also obtain information, advice and support from the EU Citizens Rights Project Scotland.
Impact on Local Businesses
We will also work with Dundee and Angus Chamber of Commerce to make sure that local businesses are prepared for the impact of Brexit. The Home Office have launched an ‘employer’s toolkit’: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/eu-settlement-scheme-employer-toolkit
Scottish Enterprise have published a toolkit to help businesses get set for Brexit: https://www.scottish-enterprise.com/learning-zone/business-guides-and-webinars/components-folder/business-guides-and-webinar-listing/get-set-for-brexit-toolkit
A self-assessment tool has been created to help businesses identify how Brexit might affect them, providing bespoke recommendations for action to help their planning activities: https://www.prepareforbrexit.scot/
Impact on Further/Higher Education
The 20,000 students who attend Dundee's two universities and further education college make up around one in seven of the population - the highest figure in Scotland. They contribute greatly to the city, culturally and economically.
We are aware that significant numbers of those students - and staff - are from non-UK EU countries, and are working closely with our colleagues in Further and Higher education regarding Brexit and the impacts it may have on them.
The Scottish Government had pledged to provide free tuition for EU students starting their courses in 2018-19 and has extended the guarantee of free tuition for EU students to those starting in the 2019 to 2020 academic year. Eligible students will have their fees met for the duration of their studies, even after the UK leaves the EU.
Students are advised to visit university/college websites to find news and information related to the UK’s participation in the Erasmus+ programme.