London [UK], Mar. 21 : British Prime Minister Theresa May will trigger article 50, the formal mechanism for starting negotiations for Britain to leave the European Union (EU) on March 29.
According to the Guardian, UK's permanent representative to the European Union, Sir Tim Barrow, notified the EU on Monday that a letter should be expected on that date.
The move will put the UK on course to leave the EU on the same date in 2019. Speaking during her visit to Swansea after the date was announced, May said: "I am very clear that I want to ensure we get the best possible deal for the United Kingdom that works for everyone across the United Kingdom and all parts of the UK when we enter these negotiations." "I have set out my objectives.
These include getting a good free trade deal. They include putting issues like continuing working together on issues like security at the core of what we are doing.
We are going to be out there, negotiating hard, delivering on what the British people voted for," she added.
May has repeatedly pledged she would take the action to start the Brexit process "by the end of March".
Formal EU-UK negotiations are unlikely to start until mid-May at the very earliest, while some diplomats representing member states in Brussels believe it is more likely talks will start in earnest in June.
European council president Donald Tusk tweeted shortly afterwards that he would present the remaining 27 EU members with a draft response to the British government, known as the guidelines, within 48 hours of receiving May's letter.
Downing Street said after the formal trigger, the UK expected that the remaining 27 EU members would meet to agree their guidelines for the negotiations and the European commission's negotiating mandate.