Entrepreneurs voice uncertainty in major Brexit Business Survey

Brexit series for FT.

usiness opinion may be split on Brexit, but unease about the unknown is having a discernible effect on trade among SMEs and microbusinesses.

A Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) discussion panel will hear the results of a survey conducted by Polish Business Link (PBLINK) among 550 UK entrepreneurs. It shows that while 70% of respondents report no impact as yet on relations with the business community or neighbours, many are anxious about the future. 48% cite difficulty in staff recruitment as an adverse effect already in play, and 46% have considered at some point moving back to Poland or another EU country due to Brexit.

Chief Executive Bart Kowalczk said:

“Those who said Brexit did not affect them, they just said ‘no’, but if someone was affected there was lots of comments, sometimes essays – this is a more emotional thing for part of the community. I should point out that this survey was organised among entrepreneurs, so in theory at least, people clearly committed to business in the UK and UK society.”

Mr Kowalczyk will present the report findings to an FCO discussion panel about collaboration with EU communities on Tuesday (15th Jan), ahead of the Commons vote on the British EU exit deal later that evening.

More respondents cite social media than television as the source of information about Brexit, but 44% still consult newspapers.

A wide range of business sectors were represented in the survey:

Construction 20%;

Service Sector 19%;

Manufacturing 14%;

Food Industry 12%;

Hospitality 9%;

Other 26%.