BUSINESS leaders in Somerset have called on the Government to ‘focus’ for the sake of the country and businesses.

The Brexit vote is expected to have huge ramifications for businesses, both small and medium sized companies and huge multi-national companies, with one of the main issues being access to the single market of trade that exists within the union.

Exports and imports will also be affected.

Now, bosses from Somerset Chamber of Commerce and Industry have said that the Government needs to refocus quickly to help firms.


Dale Edwards, chief executive of the chamber, said: “The months of campaigning have taken their toll on businesses up and down the country, with strategic and investment decisions put on hold due to the ongoing uncertainty around the EU referendum.

“Now that the British electorate has decided that the United Kingdom should leave the EU, the government must provide a clear plan with timelines for the next steps, starting with clear monetary and fiscal policies to minimise the impact of any short and medium term uncertainty.

“The Somerset Chamber will be calling for a swift refocus within government to make sure that business is at the heart of what happens next. 

“Whether or not our politicians have the courage to take the big, tough, domestic decisions needed to create a fantastic environment for business is a question I hear again and again from business people across the county. 

“A clear message needs to be communicated by the government that the UK is open for business and it must do whatever it takes to instil confidence, both domestically and internationally. 

“Somerset businesses of all sizes and across all sectors will have questions that will need answering – questions about export procedures, the impact on interest rates, implications for workers originating in the EU. All of these, and others, need urgent attention. 

“Despite the uncertainty that will continue over the coming months as we clarify exactly what our new position outside the EU looks like, we have confidence in the strength and resilience of the businesses here in Somerset and the South West.”

Graham Knight, chairman of Somerset Chamber, added: “We have had a year of canvassing about the critical issue of the EU referendum and at times you cannot help but think that the machinery of government has ground to a halt, with business suffering as a result. 

“I trust we can now get back to concentrating on creating the right environment for business, and indeed the UK economy, to flourish. This is more important than ever now, given the intrinsic uncertainty that comes with the country’s vote to leave the EU.

“These have been uncertain times and the Chamber movement has been trying to impress on all parties the need to get back to business and previous commitments. The Scottish referendum, the general election and the EU referendum have all been distractions that have taken the political eye off the ball of doing the day-to-day business of government. 

“Whatever your political persuasion, I hope that any change of Prime Minister does not lead to the main protagonists again canvassing and lobbying and forgetting what really counts.”