60% firms say Brexit to have ‘negative impact’

More than 60% of Scottish companies believe Brexit will have a negative impact on their business and only 19% believe that it will have a positive impact, according to a survey of 320 firms by the Fraser of Allander Institute.

One third of Scottish firms said the impact would be “very negative.”

About 40% of Scottish firms said that Brexit could have a negative impact on their investment plans — but 40% also said it was unlikely to lead to any change.

About 10% said it was likely to have a positive impact on future plans.

On recruitment plans, 55% said Brexit was unlikely to have any impact, 34% said it would have a negative impact and 4% said it would have a positive impact.

More than 85% of Scottish companies said they had done no preparation whatsoever — or “very little” — for Brexit, with less than 1% having made significant plans.

“The clear consensus amongst business is that Brexit will have a negative impact … ” said the institute.

“Resolving the current political and economic uncertainty – as best as possible – must now therefore be the key priority.

“In this regard, it is imperative that policy-makers do all they can to help reduce this source of instability to allow businesses to invest and press-ahead with their recruitment plans.

“The longer the period of uncertainty continues, the more damaging the impact will be on the economy.”