Small businesses remain split over Brexit as business chief is suspended

Director general of the British Chambers of Commerce, John Longworth, has been suspended after public support in favour of Brexit

More than two fifths of UK businesses (41%) would currently vote to remain in the EU, while a quarter (24%) would vote to leave and over a third (35%) are undecided – according to a recent survey carried out by Sage.

The data follows news that John Longworth, director general of the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC), has been suspended after breaking the BCC’s neutrality agreement and coming out in favour of a British exit (Brexit); saying the UK has a “brighter economic future” outside the EU.

The survey also found that 52% of entrepreneurs think that their businesses receive ‘no benefit’ from staying in the EU yet 51% believe leaving the EU would negatively affect their ability to trade with EU businesses.

Over half (55%) of the business owners surveyed said government doesn’t listen to their views on the EU debate, while a quarter (24%) said that remaining part of the EU will increase the amount of red tape businesses they have to deal with.

Last week, data published by Tech London Advocates showed that the vast majority of London’s tech businesses want to remain in the EU.

Brendan Flattery, president of Sage Europe, commented: “It’s clear that small businesses, who make up over 98% of all UK businesses and create two thirds of our jobs, do not feel included in the discussion. Both sides of the in/out divide should be helping small businesses understand the issues and presenting solid data so they can make a fully informed decision.”

UK small business owners share their views on the upcoming EU referendum here.

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