Responding to the Outcome of the EU Referendum

Brexit-Bremain

STATEMENT from the Local Enterprise Partnership in response to the EU Referendum

The outcome of the EU Referendum has left passions running high, but whatever personal opinion people may have, a decision has been made and the Government will now begin planning to negotiate an exit from the EU.

Our LEP will respond to the impact of this.

There will be a period of financial and economic uncertainty, which will affect business performance and confidence. However, we are a region blessed with thousands of great businesses, who have proven time and again they are resilient, determined and successful. Now is the time to work together even harder to achieve success in the future.

As the Local Enterprise Partnership, we will continue to support these many great businesses, providing advice and support when they need it, and we will all need to understand the full implications of the decision to exit the EU and put in place plans to mitigate the downside wherever we are able to do so.

The EU, for all its strengths and weaknesses, has and continues to invest significant funding across our area. As the Local Enterprise Partnership, currently we have c€110m funding allocated for investment through our EU Structural Investment Fund, between now and 2021. This funding is intended for critical investments, such as improving rural broadband, helping businesses grow and innovate and, importantly, helping the most disadvantaged in our area address barriers and gain the skills they need to enable them to gain good quality employment.

We need to ensure this level of investment is not lost when the EU exit is negotiated. As a country we must continue to invest to deliver sustainable growth and good quality jobs.

We are also aware that many of our partners also benefit from significant investment from the EU, be that our great universities undertaking world class research or our agricultural businesses through farm payments. The success of these organisations and businesses are crucial to the growth and sustainability of our economy and our communities, and we will work in close partnership with them to understand the impact of the EU exit and to build on their strengths, their capabilities and their potential.

It is always hard to be certain in the immediate aftermath of such a significant decision, however one fact has not changed – we are an ambitious area with world class assets, great businesses and major ambition. We will continue to invest, partner and lobby to ensure our ambitions are realised.