Companies leaving over Brexit


Jonathan Freedland wrote in the Guardian something we all predicted, and were warned about as early as 2016. There’s obviously an editorial slant to this, but the listed companies and actions are all too real:

… Dyson’s announcement came on the same day that P&O revealed that it will be re-registering its entire cross-Channel fleet of ferries under the flag of Cyprus. To their credit, P&O were upfront: they’re doing this because of Brexit. Similarly, Sony is moving its European HQ from London to Amsterdam. Meanwhile, Bentley is stockpiling parts, and Dixons Carphone and Pets at Home are making similar moves. “We don’t want families to run out of food for their pets” after March 29, the latter company said in a line that, oddly, did not appear on the side of a bus during the 2016 campaign. Again, these firms could not be clearer. In the words of Bentley’s chief executive: “It’s Brexit that’s the killer … It would put at fundamental risk our chance of becoming profitable.”

I’ve come around to not blaming people who voted for Brexit; there are legitimate grievances against the current economic system, and this was a way to voice it in a political system that had ignored them. But it’s increasingly clear—glaringly so—that Leave voters were lied to, or at best mislead about Brexit’s economic consequences.

But what about that widely-disseminated talking point that the EU needs the UK more than the UK needs the EU? Andrew Walker wrote for BBC News:

All these figures point in the same direction. The UK looks more exposed in the event of disruption to trade relations. That is not to say the impact on the EU would be trivial, far from it. The EU 27 would undoubtedly face significant economic harm from major disturbances to their trade with the UK. But on the basis of the trade data, the “they need us more” claim looks very shaky.

To put it into perspective, the UK contributes 66 million people and $2.9 trillion in GDP to the EU’s population of half a billion and $19.1 trillion GDP.

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