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UK tries new campaign to prepare public for Brexit

LONDON (AP) — Brexit moved back to the front-burner of British politics on Monday, months after COVID-19 knocked it out of the headlines, with the government launching a new public information campaign to prepare the nation for departure.

Advertisements under the “The U.K.’s new start: let’s get going” campaign will warn British tourists to get health insurance before traveling to the continent and offer advice on how to take pets abroad. Britons will also be warned to check the roaming policy of their telephone provider.

Britain has technically left the European Union, but the U.K. and the EU gave themselves an 11-month “transition period” — in which the U.K. will continue to follow the bloc’s rules. That ends Dec. 31, when the country will leave the 27-nation bloc’s vast single market.

But much remains unclear. Talks with the EU on a new trade deal have bogged down amid wide differences on major issues including fishing rights and competition. With a deal, the U.K. faces tariffs and other barriers to business with the EU, its biggest trading partner.

The government is trying to prepare people for the moment when agreements on trade, security and a host of other areas will change. One notable change will be the end of the freedom to live and work anywhere across of the EU, which is now comprised of 27 countries.

Home Secretary Priti Patel is set to announce details on how the U.K.’s new points-based immigration system will operate when it goes into effect.

The system is designed to cut the number of low-skilled migrants entering Britain from the beginning of next year, but also aims to make it easier for higher-skilled workers to get U.K. visas.

Points are given for English language ability, having a job offer from an approved employer, and meeting a minimum salary threshold.

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