Announcing at the Conservative Party Conference that Article 50 will be triggered within six months, Prime Minister Theresa May has removed one big question on timing, but according to the CBI has accelerated an urgent need for answers on several others.
Carolyn Fairbairn, the CBI’s director general, stated: “With a rapid timetable pointing to an exit from the EU in Spring 2019, businesses need to know the Government’s ambition on the fundamental issues of skills and barrier-free access to EU markets as soon as possible. With the Great Repeal Bill, we now know that, on the day the UK leaves the EU, the rules businesses must follow will be broadly the same as they are today. As long as this doesn’t lead to a bonfire of good regulation and maintains consistent rules such that companies can trade easily with their EU neighbours, then this has the potential to help.”
Fairbairn added: “Businesses cannot continue to operate in the dark in other areas. The decisions they face today are both real and pressing. The Government’s desire to play its negotiating cards close to its chest must be tempered by clear indications on how we will trade with the UK’s most important partners and how firms will be able to employ the people needed to drive continued growth into the future.”