Majority of business leaders against Brexit, study finds

Four out of five business leaders in UK and Germany believe Brexit would have negative impact.

By Julie Levy-Abegnoli

18 Feb 2016

A new survey, by the Bertelsmann Stiftung, has revealed that the majority of UK and German business leaders are against Brexit. They believe that if Britain were to leave the EU, it would have disastrous effects for employment, revenues and investments.

The study found that 79 per cent of entrepreneurs, managing directors and executive employees want the UK to remain a member of the EU. In Germany, 83 per cent of business leaders are against Britain leaving, as are 76 per cent in the UK.

The sectors most supportive of EU membership are manufacturing, ICT and tech companies, as well as the retail and consumer goods industries.


Around 42 per cent of respondents fear Brexit will have negative effects for the job market, while 38 per cent worry it would negatively affect sales. In addition, 33 per cent are concerned over changes to investment, with 34 per cent worrying about employment issues.

Almost a third of business leaders surveyed say they would reduce capacity in the UK or relocate elsewhere, particularly in the IT sector (41 per cent) and financial institutions (33 per cent).

The survey comes as UK Prime Minister David Cameron prepares to battle it out with the leaders of the other 27 EU member states, hoping to secure a deal on Britain's EU membership ahead of a June referendum.


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