With just six months to go before the UK leaves the EU, the British Chamber of Commerce is calling for the UK government to redouble their efforts to reach an agreement with the EU – and ensure a transition period that could help firms prepare for change and prevent a slump in both investment and recruitment. The leading business group presses the need for clarity and precision so that firms can plan for the future with a degree of confidence.
The BCC in partnership with Bibby Financial Services conducted a survey of business opinion amongst 2,500 from across the UK and found that 62% of firms have not completed a Brexit risk assessment.
Some of the headline figures from the report:
- 21% of businesses said they would cut investment if there is a 'no-deal'
- 20% would move all or part of their business to the EU in a no-deal
- 18% would cut recruitment in a no-deal
- 62% of firms still haven’t completed a Brexit risk assessment
The survey highlighted a concerning lack of Brexit preparation. According to the findings, 62% of UK firms have not done a risk assessment of the impact of Brexit to their business. The figures reflect a huge disparity between the preparations of the largest companies and their smaller counterparts. 69% of micro firms (those with 1-9 employees) have not completed an assessment, compared to 24% of firms with over 250 employees.
The BCC have helpfully compiled a Business Brexit Checklist to help firms consider the changes Brexit may bring to their own firm, customers and suppliers, and to help them plan ahead.
With six months to go until the UK leaves the EU, the BCC has found that many SMEs are either awaiting more clarity before they act, or are suffering from ‘Brexit fatigue’ and have switched off from the process because they don’t believe they will be affected.
They have also compiled a Brexit Risk Register to assist businesses with keeping track of their preparations.
The HTA recommends that all businesses, large or small, prepare in advance for Brexit using the tools above.