London, Mar 15 : After British MPs voted on Thursday to ask the European Union (EU) for an extension to Article 50, British businesses have voiced their support to Brexit delay, but urged the MPs to reach consensus.
Adam Marshall, director general of the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC), said that most businesses supported an extension to Article 50 to avert a messy and disorderly exit, but "with just two weeks to go, this vote leaves firms with no real clarity on the future." Marshall said businesses were waiting for Parliament to reach a consensus, but businessmen "are losing faith that they will achieve this."
"Firms are continuing to enact their contingency plans, anxiety amongst many businesses is rising, and customers are being lost," said Marshall, adding that "businesses, jobs, investment and our communities are still firmly in the danger zone."
Josh Hardie, deputy director-general of the Confederation of British Industry (CBI), said: "without a radically new approach, business fears this is simply a stay of execution."
Hardie urged MPs to have an urgent duty to put in place a process, saying that "both main parties must make meaningful moves to find consensus, not simply double-down on their red lines or put hopes of power ahead of the country."
"Now is the time for those who champion leadership through compromise to show courage," Hardie said. Andrew Gray, head of Brexit at PwC, said: "some businesses may see today's news as a reason to slow down on their preparations for the imminent threat of no-deal, but an extension is not yet a done deal." "The legal default remains that the UK leaves on 29 March, with or without a deal, and that is what businesses need to prepare for," Gray said.
"Businesses must not take their foot off the gas, and we urge all organizations to keep preparing for both a deal and no-deal scenario," Gray added. XINHUA