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LONDON Feb 6 More than half of British business
leaders believe the vote to leave the European Union has had a
negative impact on their companies but most firms are confident
they can survive the change, according to a survey on Monday.
Britain's economy has performed more strongly than expected
since the Brexit vote last June, but an Ipsos Mori survey of
more than 100 of the country's top 500 firms found that 58
percent felt the vote to leave had taken a toll.
According to the survey, more than two thirds of those
questioned said they had already taken action to respond to the
vote, including putting contingency plans in place and analysing
the impact the different relationships Britain could have with
the EU following its renegotiation.
Of those taking action, 10 percent said they were moving
business outside of Britain.
"Our annual survey of FTSE 500 business leaders provides a
unique insight into what the business world is thinking ahead of
Brexit," Ipsos Mori Chief Executive Ben Page said.
"Unfortunately, it looks like business in this country is
already feeling the pain of the economic upheaval of leaving the
Britain's business leaders were some of the most vocal
supporters of EU membership in the run up to the vote, arguing
that access to a single market of 500 million people would
enable them to grow their companies, and the economy, in the
However the survey found a more positive response when
asking about the longer term impact on business, with nearly all
confident they could adapt to Brexit.
"Thirty two percent of respondents said they think their
business will start to feel the positive effects of leaving the
EU in five years' time," Page said. "And the number of
(business) captains that think it will remain a negative impact
reduces to 45 percent when looking at long range forecast."
(Reporting by Kate Holton; editing by Michael Holden)