United Kingdom to launch European Union divorce on March 29

Time to wave goodbye Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May

The PM's official spokesman said: "Earlier this morning, the UK Permanent Representative to the European Union informed the office of Donald Tusk that it is the UK's intention to trigger Article 50 on March 29". According to BBC News, if all goes according to the two-year plan of negotiations, then Brexit will happen in March of 2019.

The official notification will be sent to European Council President Donald Tusk next Wednesday, starting the formal process of leaving the EU.

He said the Government wanted to secure "a new, positive partnership between the United Kingdom and our friends and allies in the European Union". We expect it will be a two-year process and we are confident that is what we will achieve.

"Everything is ready on this side", commission spokesman Margaritis Schinas said.

Negotiations will begin to outline a UK Brexit deal, which could include trade deals - although this might be handled separately.

"I want to be clear that a "no deal scenario" would be bad for everyone, but above all for the United Kingdom, because it would leave a number of issues unresolved".

Several other business organisations such as ICAEW and the Confederation of British Industry said they would be commenting on the Article 50 triggering next week, when the process to leave the European Union official starts.

May succeeded David Cameron soon after the Brexit referendum, but delayed triggering Article 50 to give herself time to work on her strategy.

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London has repeatedly said it wants to maintain good relations with its European allies, but major battles await, in particular over budget contributions, immigration and future trade ties.

A transitional deal for about five years is certainly an option.

Sir Tim Barrow, the UK's most senior representative at the European Union, said the 27 had had plenty of time to prepare for this moment and he expected them to set out their stall "pretty quickly".

Meanwhile, Britain's Institute for Government has said as many as 15 new Parliamentary Bills may be needed due to Brexit.

These terms may include a £50bn ($NZ87.5bn) "divorce bill" and Mr Juncker said Brexit could bring the remaining 27 members closer together: "They will all see from the UK's example that leaving the European Union is a bad idea".

"It will be a challenge for both the government and Parliament to do all this while still ensuring full scrutiny and leaving room for the government's domestic policy agenda".

The IFG - an independent charity that aims to increase government effectiveness - says departments will need "ruthlessly to prioritise" other legislation and find non-legislative routes to get the laws through, particularly given the government's narrow Commons majority.

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