Brexit: Five things we learnt this month - February
A round up of this month's biggest Brexit news.
1. MPs voted in favour of Brexit
The government’s Brexit bill, draft legislation detailing plans for the UK’s departure from the EU, was approved by MP’s during a vote in the commons.
Despite nine amendment proposals put forward by various MPs, the final vote tally was 494 to 122 in favour of the bill, in its original form.
The bill is now with the House of Lords.
The need for MPs to vote on whether Article 50 could be triggered came after a case was brought to the Supreme Court by campaigners who argued that approving the bill without a vote would be undemocratic.
2. ICAS launches Brexit Tracker Survey
To gauge business sentiment during this unprecedented time, ICAS in association with law firm Brodies LLP, has launched a Brexit Tracker Survey to chart the experiences of ICAS members in the run up to triggering Article 50 and after, as the UK and EU negotiations unfold.
Mike McKeon, Chair of the Brexit Advisory Group said, “The results of the Brexit Tracker Survey will form a powerful view of business sentiment as the UK begins the process of exiting the EU.
“I encourage all members to take a few minutes to complete this survey, as the results will help ICAS understand your views, issues and concerns.”
The survey will be emailed on a quarterly basis, so watch out for its arrival in your inbox on 9 May 2017, 5 September 2017 and 30 November 2017.
3. Brexit could have “positive impact” on the accountancy profession
A study commissioned by the AAT and the ACCA found that nearly half of MPs believe that the UK leaving the EU will have a “positive impact” on the accountancy profession.
According to 47% of MPs who took part in the study, Brexit would be a boost to accountants as their clients look to them for advice on the implications of Britain leaving the EU.
Conversely, 23% said that Brexit did not “represent a good opportunity for accountancy”, while 25% of MPs said they were uncertain.
4. UK growth forecast upgraded
The European Commission reviewed the predictions it made shortly after the Brexit vote, for the UK and the Eurozone.
As a result of the UK economy performing better than expected in 2016, the European Commission expects growth of 1.5% this year as opposed to the 1% it predicted in November.
Although these figures are more positive, they are still relatively far off the 2% growth of last year.
5. Start-ups looking to set up in Europe because of Brexit
According to a survey by Silicon Valley Bank (SVB), 1 in 5 start-ups are planning to set up their base of operations in Europe because of Brexit.
However, only 1% of those surveyed said they planned to move their HQ to somewhere else on the continent, with 5% saying they plan to move outside both Britain and Europe.
62% of start-ups said they had no plans to set up a base outside the UK.
SVB UK branch president and head of Europe, Middle East and Africa, Phil Cox said: “The Brexit findings in our survey this year are compelling and we are pleased to bring some data to a conversation that has been largely anecdotal,”
“While 21 per cent of innovators say they will be opening European outposts, the majority will continue to back Britain as the home for their headquarters."