Will we or won’t we?...

The June referendum on Britain’s membership of the EU is looming ever closer but it seems that many business professionals are still undecided on whether to back Brexit or not. Such a key decision needs to be carefully considered and the arguments for and against must be deliberated…

Having the experience of working with businesses with large import and export requirements has given me a good sense of the likely impact of a Brexit, for regional businesses. Some clients are already facing problems with their overseas prospects as they do not want to commit to placing orders when things might all change in June. Without a confirmed outcome, some clients are trying to export without that commitment from those prospects outside the UK – which of course makes doing business overseas much harder. Exchange rate uncertainty is also causing a great deal of concern.

Some say that retaining the status quo will provide an element of stability and an improvement will be seen in exchange rates. But what about the USA’s influence? Numerous reports, and Barack Obama’s own sentiments show us that the US would like us to stay in Europe to build better, stronger relationships. As a result, some clients are considering that trade with the US could also be affected if we leave the EU, as doing business overseas without that safe gateway into Europe may become even less appealing.

So, if we weren’t part of the EU, whose relationship (trade and otherwise) would we use as our template? I can’t see that there is one. But, as a business owner and a British citizen, the answer to this question is vital to help me make an informed decision… The biggest question in my view remains – should we stay and try to reform various aspects of the EU from within or should we just go and try to develop some kind of trade agreement?

I’d be interested to hear your thoughts! Get in touch info@nickipaddy.co.uk

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