On 19 February 2016, the referendum on the UK’s membership of the European Union went under the spotlight as David Cameron came up with a deal negotiating a special status for the UK in the EU. The Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) – the UK’s pressure group representing small business owners’ interests – will be the voice of micro and small businesses during the EU referendum campaign.
The Prime Minister - David Cameron - responded to FSB’s call by asserting that he sought to improve competitiveness in the EU and prioritise SMEs in his EU reform. Furthermore, FSB’s in-depth study revealed the main concerns of SMEs regarding the EU referendum. Measures facilitating and reducing red-tape in order to boost cross-border trade are welcomed by SMEs. Among the top priorities of small business owners are the simplification of VAT and the completion of the Single Market whilst protecting the United Kingdom’s economy.
Mike Cherry - the FSB Policy Director - outlined that a key issue for SMEs is the lack of clear evidence of the impact of the UK’s membership on the EU. SMEs owners’ opinion has been divided on whether the EU is beneficial or not for the UK and their businesses. Indeed, if both campaign groups do not provide tangible and concrete evidence, SMEs owners will have difficulties to understand the real impact of this referendum on their economic activities. Hence, FSB members ask for neutral and unbiased information of the real impact of the forthcoming referendum.
For more information about the new settlement for the United Kingdom with the European Union, please click here.