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Business groups baulk at no-deal Brexit

An alliance of industry associations from eight countries has today issued a joint statement encouraging the UK Government to pursue a deal with the European Union before its scheduled exit on 31 October. Ai Group is the Australian representative on the business group alliance which is concerned about the negative economic and social consequences of a no-deal Brexit.

At the launch of the global business no-deal Brexit push, Ai Group Chief Executive, Innes Willox, said: "When Australian companies made strategic decisions to invest in the UK, they were based on laws and regulations that gave them access to the EU market. A no-deal Brexit will cause significant disruption to supply channels between the UK and the EU and businesses are concerned about the impact this will have on their local operations, their staff, and their customers.

"The role of the UK as a channel into Europe means that a well-executed Brexit is critical to Australian companies with investments in the UK. With the UK itself only making up 16% of the current EU market, an orderly Brexit is more important than a Free Trade Agreement between Australia and the UK.

"Our common heritage and the UK's proximity and integration with the EU has meant that many Australian companies have used the UK as their EU base. The prospect of further uncertainty over the terms of the departure of the UK from the EU will push many Australian companies to reconsider the suitability of the UK for that role," Mr Willox said.

Signatories to the Brexit letter are: Australian Industry Group, Brazilian National Confederation of Industry, Canadian Chamber of Commerce, Federation of Egyptian Industries, Keidanren (Japan), Federation of Korean Industries, Business New Zealand, and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce  

Text of the joint Brexit statement is available here.

Media enquiries: Tony Melville – 0419 190 347