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Background to the UK's EU referendum 2016

Read relevant reports and briefings that relate to the UK's EU referendum 2016, including links to the relevant legislation as well as background to the negotiations.

Referendum result

Vote LeaveVote Remain

European Union Referendum 2016
This Commons Library Briefing Paper analyses the results of the referendum on EU membership held on 23 June 2016.

Eligibility to vote

People eligible to vote must be over 18 years old, and at least one of the following:

  • A British or Irish citizen resident in the UK
  • A qualifying Commonwealth citizen
  • A British citizen who is a service voter or overseas voter (British citizens may register as overseas voters for up to 15 years after leaving the UK)
  • A Member of the House of Lords
  • An Irish or Commonwealth citizen who would be entitled to vote in European elections in Gibraltar

The choice of franchise (Section 2 of the European Union Referendum Act 2015) excludes citizens of other EU countries resident in the UK (but EU citizens from Cyprus and Malta resident in the UK qualify as Commonwealth citizens, and Irish citizens resident in the UK are also included in the franchise).

Withdrawal process

Overview of policy areas

  • A guide to the EU budget
    Explains EU spending, sources of revenue, the UK's rebate and Member States' contributions and receipts

International affairs

Social issues

Business and trade

  • EU membership and UK science
    Report on the influence of EU membership on UK science including freedom of movement of researchers and EU regulations

Free movement of people

  • Migration Statistics
    A guide to UK migration statistics and methods used in measuring them in the UK and in EU countries

  • Asylum Statistics
    Statistics and analysis of asylum trends in the UK and other EU countries

Devolved legislatures



Northern Ireland

  • EU matter (NI Assembly newsletter)
    Newsletter produced by the EU Affairs Manager including information on the work of the Assembly committees on EU issues and EU developments

  • @NIAEUMatters
    Follow the Northern Ireland Assembly Twitter account focusing on EU issues

Relevant legislation and debates

Background to negotiations

Further reading

Image: iStockphoto

News from across the House

News on exiting the EU

News from across the House of Commons and House of Lords

Find out more

UK campaign groups

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