42% of UK small businesses could still be swayed on EU vote

Majority of undecided business owners say they need more detail on the cost of EU membership and the practical implications of a Brexit

Almost half of the UK’s small firms (42%) are still undecided on whether or not to vote for a British exit (Brexit) in the upcoming EU referendum; according to a new poll by the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB).

The poll, conducted with 4,000 small business owners, found that over half of those businesses surveyed do not feel informed about the referendum – confirmed for June 23 2016 – and want more information on the economic impact that a Brexit would have on the UK.

See also: Brexit – Should we stay or should we go? 

38% of those surveyed said they needed more detail on the “adminstrative burden” of complying with EU regulation while 33% want more detail on the cost of EU membership.

Other areas raised by small businesses that would influence their EU vote included how it would impact free movement of people, trade, and EU funding.

The research comes just days after prominent entrepreneurs and business owners, including Jacqueline Gold, Richard Reed and Martha Lane Fox, signed a letter campaigning for Britain to remain in the EU.

FSB policy director, Mike Cherry, said the findings indicate that it is “game on” for both sides in this debate:

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“Our wide ranging research sends a very clear message on what information small businesses want from both official campaigns once they are appointed by the Electoral Commission.

“It is crucial that once appointed, both the ‘Remain’ and ‘Leave’ campaign groups tackle this information deficit.”


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