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BCC survey reveals firms would reduce recruitment and investment in the event of no-deal Brexit

The British Chambers of Commerce has published new research demonstrating some of the potential real-world consequences of the UK leaving the EU without a deal on the 31 October.

A survey of over 1,500 companies by the leading business group – covering of all sizes and sectors of business, across the UK – found that in the event of a ‘no deal’ exit on 31st October, nearly a quarter of firms surveyed (24%) said they would revise investment plans down, while just 4% would revise up. 71% of respondents did not state that they would revise investment plans.

22% of businesses surveyed said they would revise recruitment plans down in the event of no-deal, while 3% would revise up. 73% of respondents did not state that they would revise investment plans.

Larger businesses surveyed (firms with more than 50 employees) were more likely to report that they would revise investment (33%) and recruitment (31%) plans downwards in a ‘no deal’ scenario. 5% of surveyed businesses reported they would revise investment and recruitment upwards, respectively.

Additionally, nearly one in five firms surveyed (18%) said they planned to move some or all of their business overseas in a no-deal scenario, signalling the possibility of a significant movement of operations by some firms away from the UK. 2% of respondents said they would plan to move their overseas presence to UK (if they are currently partly based outside UK).

Dr Adam Marshall, Director General of the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC), said: “The government has repeatedly said that it wants to reach a deal with the EU, and our latest evidence shows the importance of delivering a negotiated settlement.

“A ‘no deal’ exit on 31 October would have real-world impacts across the UK. Many more companies tell us that they would revise recruitment and investment plans downward, rather than up, in the event of a no-deal exit.

“Our evidence yet again demonstrates the importance of averting a messy and disorderly exit from the EU on 31 October.”

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