EU UK referendum Brexit. Image: bluedesign/fotolia.
The UK has voted to leave the EU. Image: bluedesign/fotolia.

Within hours of the official announcement the UK had voted to leave the EU, two veterinary associations have released statements.


The RCVS said: “We note the result of the referendum is to leave the EU and will now be closely following the negotiations between our Government and the EU.

“These negotiations are expected to take a minimum of two years. It is difficult to say, at this stage, how the vote will affect current arrangements, such as the Mutual Recognition of Professional Qualifications Directive that allows European vets to practise in the UK and vice versa, and it is likely to be some time before we know.

“Needless to say, we will be working with Defra to minimise any disruption from the transition process.  As always, we will work to maintain and increase the UK’s high standards of veterinary care and animal welfare.”


Sean Wensley
BVA president Sean Wensley said the association “will work hard to ensure the voice of the veterinary profession is heard during the negotiation and discussions”.

BVA president Sean Wensley said: “The UK’s decision to leave the EU will have a significant impact on matters of interest to the veterinary profession – particularly in relation to regulation, education and workforce planning, but also in terms of animal welfare, research, surveillance and animal movements.

“The BVA will work hard to ensure the voice of the veterinary profession is heard during the negotiation and discussions that will now begin, to secure the best possible outcomes for our profession and for animal health and welfare in the UK.

“The Vet Futures report provides an excellent summary of issues we need to consider in those discussions, and the Vet Futures Action Plan, due to be launched at the Vet Futures Summit on 4 July, outlines key initiatives we need to take forward, albeit with revised timelines while the full impact of “Brexit” is determined.

“The BVA will retain an outward looking and inclusive perspective through our relationships with international partners, including the Federation of Veterinarians for Europe, Commonwealth Veterinary Association and World Veterinary Association, to ensure the UK veterinary profession continues to influence and engage on cross-border issues, such as disease surveillance, veterinary medicines and antimicrobial resistance.”

  • Full story and further reaction will appear in the 11 July issue of Veterinary Times (VT46.27).

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