Petition Hold a referendum on re-joining the European Union

We believe this is what the people want. Give the public the chance to decide whether they want to rejoin the EU, scrap post-Brexit rules and have free movement reinstated.

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Government responded

This response was given on 27 December 2023

The UK has left the EU. This delivers the result of the 2016 referendum. We welcome the positive relationship we have with the EU, based on shared interests and values.

In 2015, the Government was elected with a mandate to hold a referendum. In that referendum, the British public voted to leave the EU. The decision to leave reflects a vote from the whole of the UK.

The Government has since been re-elected twice with a clear mandate to pass the necessary legislation to leave the EU and negotiate a trade agreement.

Since 31 December 2020, the UK has been outside the EU’s customs union and Single Market, fulfilling manifesto commitments in this respect. Parliament approved the Withdrawal Agreement - the terms for the UK’s withdrawal from the EU - in January 2020. The Government’s policies on the UK’s new relationship with the EU remain subject to ongoing parliamentary scrutiny.

The Trade and Cooperation Agreement (TCA) - our free trade agreement with the EU – was passed by Parliament in December 2020. This is the first time the EU has ever agreed complete tariff-free, quota-free access in a free trade agreement. The Agreement is based on friendly cooperation between sovereign equals, centred on free trade, while establishing close cooperation in areas like transport, digital, and fighting crime.

Our focus remains implementing the TCA, ensuring that it delivers for our citizens and businesses, and driving forward our relationship with Europe outside of the EU. This agreement remains the basis of our relationship with the EU.

This year the UK and EU have agreed the Windsor Framework; agreed terms for the UK to participate in Horizon Europe and Copernicus; and signed a Memorandum of Understanding on Financial Services cooperation. The extent to which our citizens travel between our countries, to visit, study, work, and take part in cultural activities, is testament to the strength of our relationships and our people-to-people links. We continue to work together on shared global challenges including Russia's invasion of Ukraine, energy, security, trade, climate and illegal migration.

Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office

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