Brexit and Business: In Their Own Words

Brexit isn’t working for UK businesses. The European Movement’s comprehensive new survey of UK businesses exposes how difficult UK-EU trade has become for British businesses, causing huge damage across multiple business sectors, and ongoing harm to the UK economy.

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What our respondents said


said leaving the Single Market and Customs Union has had a negative effect

More than 50%

said Brexit red tape has made trading with the EU increasingly difficult


of the business community believe we will rejoin the Single Market and Customs Union in the future

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Read the full report to see what businesses told us, in their own words.

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" The research by European Movement UK shows just how much ongoing damage is still being done by Brexit. Devastating barriers to trading with the EU have forced some companies out of business. Red tape, lack of workers, huge hikes in overheads - Britain’s small and medium enterprises have sustained a disproportionate amount of the damage.
Sir Vince Cable, Vice-President of the European Movement

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Hearing from businesses in their own words

To compile this report, we spoke to companies across sectors including engineering, agriculture, hospitality and finance. Across the board, they have reported they had lost business in the EU and been made uncompetitive by new red-tape.

Here are just two of the stories we gathered through our research.

Hugh Chapman runs Long Mynd Cider in Bishops Castle, Shropshire. A Europe-wide organisation was interested in buying and distributing his products, but the life-changing deal fell through: “The administration around Brexit meant they were no longer interested. It’s economically impossible to trade with Europe at present.”

Carol owned a bespoke lingerie business in the South West - but closed her business due to Brexit. Her small lingerie business used fabrics imported from Europe. She said, ‘I did everything I could to prepare for Brexit. The reality of sending garments to the EU was a nightmare. I had goods that spent ages in transit and were then returned for ‘incorrect customs information’. The business was losing money, so I decided to close. Brexit was the final nail in the coffin.”

This report was made possible thanks to input and support from our network of local groups, members and supporters across the UK.

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