Friday 24 June was a sad day for very many of us. British voters have made their choice and we accept the decision – though with much regret. Now we have to get on with our jobs. For the British Chamber that means helping our members with practical assistance and insights to do their job and run their business, and understanding and contributing to the rules that affect them.
Our members are often significant investors and employers in the UK – employing 1.6 million people there – but also operate businesses (large or small) here in Belgium and/or many other parts of the EU and beyond. The competitiveness of the EU, and its laws and regulations will continue to be a central concern for many. Now, the UK-EU bilateral relationship will be an important added dimension for many of them.
Belgium, with its population of just 11 million, is still a top ten export market for the UK and the climate for and practicalities of investing and building businesses here will still be essential to the future of many member companies.
The negotiation of Britain’s future relationship with the EU27, whenever it begins, will be a lengthy, complex and difficult process with major implications for our members.
The British Chamber will be there to ensure our members can understand and contribute to that process.
As a Brit myself, I’m well aware that it’s not just about business. It’s about the personal too. Many people will have questions about the effect on their own lives and families. The expertise of many of our member companies will be hugely important for that. We’ll need to work with other stakeholders, and with governments and other authorities, to help address those concerns.
Take the chance to come to our Summer Cocktail on Wednesday – and tell us about your concerns.