Our Head of Public Affairs Mark Stephenson has been speaking to BDaily about the EU Referendum and what it means for businesses, particularly in the North East. Here is what he had to say:

Mark Stephenson - Head of Public Affairs

Mark Stephenson – Head of Public Affairs

“For business confidence, investment, growth and freedom of trade there is only one way to vote – and that’s to stay in the EU. Divorcing ourselves significantly reduces the UK’s attractiveness to investors, including the large multinationals who seek entry to our region because they deem it attractive.

“Manufacturing giants Nissan and Hitachi are in favour of the UK remaining in the European Market and there is a reason for this. Likewise, the majority of businesses polled in every survey favour us remaining in the UK.

“Leaving would be disproportionately harmful to our clients’ operations in the UK nations and regions. Add to this exporters relying on the access provided by EU membership to a common market of over 500m consumers, and it is clear our economy is better off in.

“Devolution of policy and regulatory power to the nations and regions is now embedded in some areas and emerging in others. The PM’s deal with EU leaders ensures that the UK can take its place in the EU on terms we are comfortable with, without impacting negatively on other member states. The deal is not perfect, nor is the EU, but it serves us well.

“If we want to make our own decisions in the North East, devolution will continue to benefit from EU membership. Everyone interested in job and wealth creation, must play our part in communicating the importance of voting to remain EU members. All businesses are familiar with risk. We will opt for risk if there is reward but only with an evidence based plan. We have no such plan – Brexit is not bankable.”

Read the full B-Daily EU Referendum North East Business Round Up Here