Responding to this morning’s step forward in the Brexit talks, Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) National Chairman Mike Cherry, said:
“The UK’s millions of small businesses will be pleased to hear that finally it appears the Brexit talks are about to move onto the second stage. The focus must now shift to the UK’s future trading relationship with the EU. This should include by early next year a guarantee that there will be no cliff-edge moment on Brexit day, but instead an orderly, time-limited transition period so that small firms only have one set of rule changes. The final deal must have as few barriers to trade as possible.
“Today’s pledge on the rights of EU citizens in the UK is in line with what FSB has pushed both the UK and EU to agree – a sensible cut-off point not before we leave the EU, and a commitment to a low-cost, simple registration system. Small firms with EU citizens in their workforce will be relieved to give their staff the certainty they need about the protection of their rights. As we leave the EU, businesses will need to continue to be able to find the workers and skills that they require, and today’s pledge is an encouraging sign of a sensible, pro-business attitude.
“On Northern Ireland, we look forward to further progress being made in the next phase of the Brexit talks, but welcome the commitment to avoid a hard border.”
As the UK’s largest business support group, FSB is the voice of the UK’s small businesses and the self-employed. Established over 40 years ago to help its members succeed in business, FSB is a non-profit making and non-party political organisation that’s led by its members, for its members. As the UK’s leading business campaigner, FSB is focused on delivering change which supports smaller businesses to grow and succeed.
FSB offers members a wide range of vital business services, including access to finance, business banking, legal advice and support along with a powerful voice in Government. Each year FSB also runs the UK’s Celebrating Small Business Awards. More information is available at www.fsb.org.uk. You can follow us on twitter @fsb_policy and on Instagram @fsb_uk.
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