Based on a recent survey, most technology business leaders in the United Kingdom are in favour of staying in the European Unions, with only 15 percent supporting Brexit. Most argue that staying in EU makes the UK tech industry more attractive to a global market as well as international investment. Brexit is causing a great deal of concern about export/import licensing for a wide range of sensitive technology project. Brexit could also create more red tape, instead of cutting it.
However, Brexit supporters said that the UK market is already quite self-sufficient and closed to minimise any negative effect. Unlike many European countries, the UK has never been closely integrated to EU, in terms of currency and geography. Even so, the UK tech industry needs to continue to be compliant with EU standards and rules to maintain lateral business relationships across borders.
There are more than two million EU immigrants in the United Kingdom working in IT, engineering and construction positions. Brexit could create obstacles recruiting multinational and multilingual talents, who may provide unique skills not commonly available in the UK. This could be a problem for tech companies that are reliant on exporting and importing goods.
Changing Regulatory Landscape
UK tech vendors and resellers that offer services to EU countries will need to continue working in a more stringent regulatory environment, compared to the current one in the UK. These companies need to maintain policies that meet the legislation in various EU countries. Start-ups in the UK could also find it difficult to navigate and adapt to the changing regulatory landscape in the European Union.
Another important question is what International companies will do, if the UK officially leaves the European Union. It is certain that the United Kingdom could start to lose its place, if Brexit causes new barriers such additional tariffs and regulations. For international investors, the UK has many distinct advantages compared to other European countries, in terms of language and logistical systems. But, they may migrate to an EU region if regulations there are more lenient and overall costs are lower.
For the moment, it’s hard to give a definite answer about the effect of Brexit on UK and global tech industries. It won’t be easy to draw the right conclusion, due to the significant amount of hyperbole currently in the media.
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