During her 45-minute speech she vowed to make a "truly Global Britain."
"I want this United Kingdom to emerge from this period of change stronger, fairer, more united and more outward-looking than ever before. I want us to be a secure, prosperous, tolerant country, a magnet for international talent," May said.
"I want us to be a truly global Britain, the best friend and neighbour to our European partners, but a country that reaches beyond the borders of Europe too. A country that goes out into the world to build relationships with old friends and new allies alike."
While May sees the U.K. leaving the single market, which would mean the country would gain control over its immigration, the prime minister said that she would nonetheless seek a "bold and ambitious free trade agreement" with the European Union.
May said her first priority is to provide as much certainty as possible to both business and the public sector throughout the process.
She outlined that wants a full departure from the EU's single market, to put a complete end to the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice as well as to "huge" contributions to the EU's budget. She also vowed to guarantee the rights of EU citizens who already live in the UK and the UK expats who live in other EU countries - a challenge that needs to be addressed "as soon as possible."
May was also clear that she doesn't want a continued membership of the EU's customs union - which sets out common tariffs with partners outside the EU. She wants the U.K. to strike deals with partners outside the EU - something that European institutions do on behalf of their member states.
"President-elect Trump has said the U.K. isn't at the back of the line for trade deal," she recalled during her speech, hinting that she woulwbe looking for a trade partnership with the largest economy in the world.
There have been speculation that the U,.K would work towards a transitional deal first that would allow for a smoother move into Brexit but it could derail the Brexit process as a result. However, Prime Minister May refused such idea. She pledged that the Brexit negotiations will take place within the two-year framework set out in EU laws, which would be followed by an implementation phase, to give business enough time to prepare.