International desk – The Leave vote in Referendum does not necessarily mean that Britain will immediately cease to be a member of the European Union.
The United Kingdom will be the first country to leave the European block since its formation 43 years ago.
That process could take a minimum of two years, with Leave campaigners suggesting during the referendum campaign that it should not be completed until 2020 – the date of the next scheduled general election, according to BBC analysis.
The prime minister will have to decide when to trigger Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty, which would give the UK two years to negotiate its withdrawal.
Once Article 50 has been triggered a country can not rejoin without the consent of all member states.
Cameron has previously said he would trigger Article 50 as soon as possible after a leave vote but Boris Johnson and Michael Gove who led the campaign to get Britain out of the EU have said he should not rush into it.
But they also said they want to make immediate changes before the UK actually leaves the EU, such as curbing the power of EU judges and limiting the free movement of workers, potentially in breach the UK’s treaty obligations.
The government will also have to negotiate its future trading relationship with the EU and fix trade deals with non-EU countries.
In Whitehall and Westminster, there will now begin the massive task of unstitching the UK from more than 40 years of EU law, deciding which directives and regulations to keep, amend or ditch.
The Leave campaign argued during a bitter four-month referendum campaign that the only way Britain could “take back control” of its own affairs would be to leave the EU.
Leave dismissed warnings from economists and international bodies about the economic impact of Brexit as “scaremongering” by a self-serving elite, says BBC.