Share this visualization
Brexit? The Eurozone? The European Economic Area? The European Free-Trade Area? The European Customs Union? Whaaat? Brexit Explained
A graphic that hopefully clarifies the complex structure of the European Union and the UK’s various routes and options for Brexit.
UPDATE: 13th Jun 2019: Updated likelihoods again. Rewrote “Backstop Brexit” description in light in Theresa May’s departure.
UPDATE: 26th Feb 2019: Updated likelihoods again for Soft Brexit, Second Referendum, No Deal, Delay Brexit. Updated Japan trade deal (now complete).
UPDATE: 30th Jan 2019: Updated likelihoods.
UPDATE: 29th Jan 2019: Now in video explainer form.
UPDATE: 16th Jan 2018: Prime Minister Teresa May’s deal defeated in Parliament causes a simultaneous narrowing and opening of the options. Added Delay Brexit and likelihoods. (previous version)
UPDATE: 17th Dec 2018: Things getting complicated. Added Norwegian Plus, 2nd Referendum, Managed No Deal, and Backstop Brexit to the maelstrom.
UPDATE: 15th July 2018: The saga continues. The UK announces its ideas for a “common rulebook” and “facilitated customs arrangement”, effectively a ‘soft’ Brexit.
Hard Brexit ministers resign.
UPDATE 3rd July 2017: It’s getting complicated! Added 2 more Brexit routes. See the first version.
UPDATE 1st AUG 2017: Detailed UK opposition party Labour’s positions. Refined ‘Free Trade Brexit’ & typical negotiation times (from here). Clarified a key difference between EEA (good & services) & Customs Unions (just goods). Read a useful, clarifying article
UPDATE 28th AUG 2017: UK opposition party, Labour, has now consolidated under a “soft Brexit” position.
Originally inspired by this Bloomberg graphic.