The British Community Committee of France (BCC) wishes you all the very best possible for 2017. Health, happiness and prosperity to you and yours!
It is going to be quite a year, for the UK Government and for the British living outside the UK, not only in France, but in all other EU member states. The Government has said it will trigger Article 50 before the end of March, thus setting the clock going on the process of exiting the European Union. But with what consequences for the British abroad?
Christopher Chantrey OBE, Chairman of the BCC, has been invited to give oral evidence on the impact of Brexit on British citizens living in other EU member states to the House of Commons Select Committee on Exiting the EU, in London on Wednesday 18th January, along with four other representatives of the British abroad, from Italy, Spain and Belgium.
It should be possible to watch the proceedings on the internet, at http://www.parliament.uk/business/committees/committees-a-z/commons-select/exiting-the-european-union-committee/ , and perhaps on BBC Parliament. The ruling on whether an Act of Parliament is necessary for the Government to trigger Article 50 is expected in the coming days from the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom.
Meanwhile, there is another court case looming - brought by the pressure group British Influence and arguing that the referendum result of last June did not mean the UK leaving the European Economic Area (EEA), which is a separate body from the European Union, with its own rules and procedures. A separate decision would be needed to trigger Article 127 of the EEA treaty, British Influence claims, but remaining in the EEA would bring considerable benefits both to the UK economy and to the British abroad. If you are interested in knowing more about this crowdfunded case - scheduled to be heard in the High Court from Thursday 19th January - please search the internet for "single market justice - the article 127 campaign".
Again, a very Happy New Year... and bon courage!