With the final tallies showing that the United Kingdom had voted to withdraw from the European Union, Prime Minister David Cameron today announced that he is standing down, but added that he will *”do everything I can in future to help this great country succeed,”* notwithstanding that the country requires fresh leadership. Markets reacted to the result, with the pound falling to its lowest level against the dollar for 30 years. World stocks saw more than $2 trillion wiped off their value this morning as the vote triggered 5-10 percent falls across Europe’s largest bourses. In the UK, The Bank of England says it will *”take all necessary steps to meet its responsibilities for monetary and financial stability.”* The European Central Bank says it is *”closely monitoring financial markets”*. The chief monetary authority for the 19 countries that use the euro currency says that it “stands ready” to provide additional credit to financial institutions if they need it to do business. It also said it was staying in close contact with other central banks.
A [Joint Statement](http://www.consilium.europa.eu/en/press/press-releases/2016/06/24-joint-statement-uk-referendum/?utm_source=dsms-auto&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Joint+statement+by+Donald+Tusk%2c+President+of+the+European+Council%2c+Martin+Schulz%2c+President+of+the+European+Parliament%2c+Mark+Rutte%2c+holder+of+the+rotating+Presidency+of+the+Council+of+the+EU%2c+and+Jean-Claude+Juncker%2c+President+of+the+European+Commission%2c+on+the+outcome+of+the+United+Kingdom+referendum) was issued by Donald Tusk, President of the European Council, Martin Schulz, President of the European Parliament, Mark Rutte, holder of the rotating Presidency of the Council of the EU, and Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission, on the outcome of the United Kingdom referendum. They pledged to stand strong and uphold the EU’s core values or promoting peace and the well-being of its peoples. They said, *”The Union of 27 Member States will continue. The Union is the framework of our common political future. We are bound together by history, geography and common interests and will develop our cooperation on this basis. Together we will address our common challenge to generate growth, increase prosperity and ensure a safe and secure environment for our citizens. The institutions will play their full role in this endeavour.”*
Earlier this morning, President Tusk had issued a separate [statement](http://www.consilium.europa.eu/en/press/press-releases/2016/06/24-tusk-statement-uk-referendum/) giving assurances that the Union was prepared for this scenario. *”On behalf of the twenty seven leaders I can say that we are determined to keep our unity as twenty seven. For all of us, the Union is the framework for our common future. I would also like to reassure you that there will be no legal vacuum.”*
International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Christine Lagarde [this morning](http://www.imf.org/external/np/sec/pr/2016/pr16303.htm) urged the authorities in the UK and Europe to work collaboratively to ensure a smooth transition to a new economic relationship between the UK and the UK, including by clarifying the procedures and broad objectives that will guide the process. *”We strongly support commitments of the Bank of England and the ECB to supply liquidity to the banking system and curtail excess financial volatility. We will continue to monitor developments closely and stand ready to support our members as needed.”*
Chris Southworth, Secretary General, at the International Chamber of Commerce, said the UK is part of a global economic system and the impact of today’s decision goes far and wide. *”As an organisation, ICC’s focus is on reiterating the importance of trade and investment – trade and investment channels with the EU must remain open, trade flows must remain strong, and we must remember that ratifying trade agreements is the key to encouraging growth and prosperity.”*
Director-General Roberto Azevêdo asserts that the WTO stands ready to work with the UK and the EU to assist them in any way it can.
The [G7 Ministers and Central Bank Governors](https://www.treasury.gov/press-center/press-releases/Pages/jl0498.aspx) also commented, noting that it will continue to monitor developments following the outcome of the referendum on the UK’s membership of the EU. *”We affirm our assessment that the UK economy and financial sector remain resilient and are confident that the UK authorities are well-positioned to address the consequences of the referendum outcome. We remain united and continue to maintain our solidarity as G7.”*
Separately, [US Treasury Secretary Lew](https://www.treasury.gov/press-center/press-releases/Pages/jl0499.aspx) said, *”The people of the United Kingdom have spoken and we respect their decision. We will work closely with both London and Brussels and our international partners to ensure continued economic stability, security, and prosperity in Europe and beyond.”* Secretary Lew also asserted that the UK and other policymakers have the tools necessary to support financial stability, which is key to economic growth.
OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurría said while it is on the public record that this was not the OECD’s recommended course of action, the focus must now shift to dealing with the outcome of this democratic process. It pledged to support the Government of the United Kingdom to make the transition as smooth as possible and advance the country’s economic and social agenda, while also helping the European Union and the international community to best address the consequences of such a decision and chart the way forward. *”The OECD believes that openness, integration and diversity will make our economies and societies stronger and fairer. Thus, we will continue to support the European project while further reflecting on how to strengthen well-being and inclusiveness, both within our countries and globally.”*
And, here in The Bahamas, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs issued a statement indicating that The Bahamas has deep and historic ties with both the UK and the EU, with shared interests in areas such as trade, economics, education, health, tourism and security. *”The Bahamas is fully confident that these relations will continue in the near term. We have received assurances on that issue in a note to The Bahamas’ Foreign Minister Fred Mitchell and received today from the High Commissioner to The Bahamas David Fitton.”*
The “Leave” vote share was 51.9%, while 48.1% voted to “Remain”. Britain will have two years to officially negotiate its departure, although it could be granted an extension if all 27 EU member states agree.