Resilient Response to Brexit from our Area’s Businesses

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A survey of small businesses carried out by our Growth Hub, How’s Business following the result of the EU referendum, shows businesses in our area are resilient in their response.

The results of the survey revealed that 38 per cent of businesses say they are unaffected by the decision, 25 per cent don’t know how it affects them and 21 per cent believe it will have a negative effect. 17 per cent of businesses believe it will have a positive effect on them.

The survey was carried out with small businesses that make the large majority of York, North Yorkshire and the East Riding. It corroborates a survey by the Federation of Small Businesses.

The Local Enterprise Partnership’s Chief Operating Officer James Farrar who is coordinating the area’s response to the decision, said it is too early for businesses to tell yet exactly what effect the referendum result will have and business owners are setling into a period of caution to wait to see how Brexit will play out.

Mr Farrar said: “It is important to remember that the UK is currently still a member of EU and we fully anticipate our EU investment programme continuing. Whilst the terms of the referendum result are still being worked out, it is impossible to tell at this early stage what the effect of the results on businesses will be. In the meantime, it is important for us to work with our partners to ensure that our area is part of the solution and continues to attract investment to help us unlock growth in our economy.”

Mr Farrar said that he fully anticipates our EU investment programme continuing, and that this will see investment in access to finance, the bioeconomy, small businesses, and supply chains alongside a major programme to invest in both the workforce, apprentices and the unemployed.

Top amongst the issues mentioned in the survey that are of concern to businesses are sales, where 50 per cent of those who responded to the survey said this was their biggest challenge. 25 per cent of those surveyed said skills was their biggest challenge and 13 per cent said funding is their biggest challenge.

Mr Farrar said: “We are working with other organisations in the area and will continue to monitor the issues facing them to continue to unlock our area’s economic growth.“