The British Overseas Territories, also known as the United Kingdom Overseas Territories, consist of fourteen territories as a part of the United Kingdom. Until now, they have not achieved independence or have voted themselves as British territory. Even though these territories remain under the jurisdiction of the United Kingdom, they are not real as a part of this country, except Gibraltar. At the same time, they are also not a part of the European Union.
Seeing the special relationship between the British Overseas Territories and the United Kingdom, the official parties were created to maintain this. There was Secretary of State for Colonies and the Colonial Official who responsible. But today, the FCO has taken over this. But they don’t work for the Sovereign Base Areas of Akrotiri and Dhekelia, because this part is under the Ministry of Defence. Along with their relationship history, here are the issues you might need to know:
People who live in these territories have no certain citizenship or nationality status. Most of them hold two statuses which are British citizenship and British nationality: the British Overseas Territories citizenship. Before it was applied to them, from 1949 until 1983, they held a citizen status as Citizenship of UK and Colonies. But today the government has revised the policy, so these people hold citizenship as we mentioned at first.
Talking about responsibility, these territories are under the UK’s Ministry. Several of these territories are used by the UK for military bases and its allies, such as Ascension Island is for the Royal Air Force and the United States Air Force, Falkland Island is committed for the British Army, Royal Navy and Royal Air Force, and many others.
3. Head of Territory
The British monarch is still the head of these territories. Thus, the Queen of Elizabeth is their queen also. The queen plays roles as the Queen of the United Kingdom, not right for a certain territory. But the queen appoints someone as a representative for her power in each territory. For example, in a permanent population, the queen points a Governor. A Governor is ahead of the state as the facto and also the senior in a political position.
People mostly speak in English, even as the root language or in codeswitching, such as Llanito, Greek, Turkish, Pitcairn Island, and many more. The language which formed from English can be found in Falkland Island English and Bermuda English (Bermuda).
Usually, one country or area has only one currency. So, anyone who comes to that place must convert the currency. But, in these territories, there are various currencies, such as the Euro, NZ dollar, US dollar, and also their own currency. However, not all territories apply those all currencies. Each territory has its rule for a certain currency only.
The United Kingdom is one of the interesting countries within its history. The British Overseas Territories are just pieces of UK’s story to know. Behind them all, the UK keeps another story to be learned. Whether from its political practice, culture, and other pearls of wisdom.