If security, confidence and optimism form the oxygen of business, the uncertainty and lack of information surrounding Brexit create a vacuum in which small enterprise risks suffocation. Where big companies can afford to take precautions – investing in alternative headquarters, scenario planning, and market prospection – small companies with tight margins cannot risk taking the wrong punt. They have to wait and see what Brexit will mean for them, suffering the Branxiety of EU customers and staff slipping away. Government must provide a concrete plan for the post-Brexit marketplace if small players are to rise to, and survive, the Brexit challenge.
Catherine was speaking at a conference on Brexit and the Future of Global Trade, held in July 2017 and organised by The Federal Trust together with the Konrad Adenauer Stifting London Office and the Global Policy Institute.