UK highly unlikely to rejoin EU in near future, odds suggest

Jacob Rees-Mogg says Brexit is ‘going well’

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Brexit divided Britain in 2016 with a small majority voting out of the EU and causing years of uncertainty as successive Governments tried to make it work.

While divisions remain over Britain’s future in Europe, the latest odds from bookmakers suggest that rejoining is not on the cards – at least for now.

Betfair is offering odds of 7/1 for the UK to re-join the EU as a full member before 2026, compared to 1/20 for staying out. Betfair spokesperson Sam Rosbottom said: “Three years on from the UK officially leaving the European Union, it doesn’t look as though Brexit will be reversed anytime soon, with odds of 7/1 to re-join in the next two years.

“Recent polls show a rise in people saying Brexit was wrong, however that hasn’t changed the odds, and while the chances of becoming EU members again in the next 10 years improve at 2/1, it’s heavily favoured at 1/3 that there will be no British representation in the European Parliament in that time.”

The news comes as the International Monetary Fund announced today that the UK is set to be the only major economy to shrink in size in 2023, with a performance worse than sanctions-hit Russia.

It is widely believed that leaving the EU has worsened the UK’s economic troubles, and a report from the Centre for European Reform in December appeared to support this view. It calculated that Brexit reduced Britain’s GDP by 5.5 per cent by the second quarter of 2022. It also states that leaving the EU has ‘inevitably’ led to tax rises for British households as Governments try to increase funds for public services.

However, Brexit supporters have been quick to point out that leaving the bloc has provided benefits to the UK, such as avoiding being roped into EU laws which affect member states.

Speaking about the anniversary, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said: “This is just the beginning of our plans to unleash growth and prosperity, and I’m determined to ensure the benefits of Brexit continue to empower communities and businesses right across the country.”

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