Europe – The BIR world recycling organisation has expressed its concern at the UK’s vote in favour of leaving the European Union. ‘The decision of the people of the United Kingdom to leave will undoubtedly have a deep impact on trade in the European Union and internationally,’ says BIR president Ranjit Baxi of UK-based J&H Sales International. While the economic and political consequences of the vote ‘cannot be fully assessed at this moment in time’, he adds, ‘we need to continue working together to promote free and fair trade globally while strengthening our diversity and reducing legislative and bureaucratic burdens on businesses.’
One of the pillars of BIR, the body emphasises, is the facilitation of ‘free and fair trade of recyclables in a sustainable and competitive world economy’. Carolyn Fairbairn, director-general of the Confederation of British Industry, agrees that many businesses will be concerned and will need time to assess the implications of the vote. ‘The urgent priority now is to reassure the markets,’ she says. ‘We need strong and calm leadership from the government, working with the Bank of England, to shore up confidence and stability in the economy.’
A vote for Brexit represents another blow to the UK steel industry, its value chains and the wider economy, and will have ‘far-reaching effects’ on the European steel sector, according to European steel association Eurofer. Its director general Axel Eggert points out that the UK steel sector depends heavily on the EU as a market, adding that Brexit will prompt international businesses to ‘reconsider their operational, commercial and investment strategies, which could have serious repercussions for the downstream client sectors of the UK steel industry’.
In the UK referendum on Thursday, 51.9% of voters favoured leaving the EU.
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