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Dear Colleagues,

Some days ago Great Britain voted to leave the

European Union. What happens now? Nothing

immediate, legally speaking. The British referendum

will be followed by withdrawal negotiations

between the British government and the remaining

27 members over a period of two years, at most.

First of all, the 2.5 million EU nationals n the UK

are unlikely to suffer serious consequences from

Brexit. However the destiny of those who will move

to the UK from now on, and of those British citizens

currently living in a EU country is less predictable. It’s

on the international financial market that Brexit has

already shown its effects. In the aftermath of Brexit,

the markets tumbled: sterling dropped against the

dollar over 10 per cent and gold prices soared 22%,

the fastest gold rally ever recorded.

Moreover, Brexit may embolden other countries’

desire to leaveEurope, to thepointwhere the real risk

of Brexit seems to be the domino effect, which may

lead to the disintegration of the European concept.

Eurosceptics in France, Germany, Netherlands, and

Italy reacted with euphoria and may step up calls for

referenda for their own countries.

Over the years, UK has become the western country

most open to China and a strategic launching pad

for Chinese investment into Europe. With Brexit this

Golden era may come to the end and China may be

forced to readjust its economic relationship with the

EU. The very first reaction in China to the vote was

the yuan suffering the biggest one-day drop since its

devaluation last August.

Uncertainty is palpable, and the potential

consequences of Brexit are hard to foresee at this

time. Three scenarios are likely to emerge. In the first

option, Britain remains a member of the European

Economic Area, like Norway, and will preserve the

so-called four freedoms of the EU, in which people,

goods, services and capital move freely among

countries. A more realistic option imagines a

comprehensive Free Trade Agreement, based on the

Swiss model. Lastly, UK may also pursue unilateral

liberalisation and negotiate trade deals on better

terms with single countries.

On another matter, I have the pleasure to

communicate that IAFEI World Congress 2016 will

be held in South Africa!

Inside and on the web site you can find more

information about the event.

It’s the first time in IAFEI’s history that a World

Congress will be held in Africa: it’s a big opportunity,

it’s a symbolic but very important opening towards a

new scenario, it’s a step on an economic and cultural


We will be proud if IAFEI can perform this task


Fausto Cosi

IAFEI Chairman