Business

JCB boss says 'little to fear' from Brexit

Picture of Anthony Bamford Image copyright JCB
Image caption Anthony Bamford says leaving the EU will lead to more freedom to trade elsewhere

The UK has "little to fear from leaving the EU", the chairman of JCB has said.

Lord Bamford, who supported Brexit, said the business community "needed to look to the future".

"European markets are important to many UK businesses, including JCB, and this will not change," he said.

"We should look ahead to opportunities to trade more freely with the rest of the world, as well as building on existing trading relationships with customers and suppliers in Europe."

The boss of the heavy equipment firm said: "The UK is the world's fifth largest trading nation. We therefore have little to fear from leaving the EU."

Brexit: Five areas to watch on the economy

Jack: The great business referendum snub

City shock at referendum result

UK interest rate 'likely to hit zero'

Business calls for stability and direction

Results in full

While some economists have warned that Britain could be heading towards a recession as the result of a leave vote, others predict stronger growth.

"We can look forward to faster rates of economic growth as we embrace the world economy," John Hearn, economist at the London Institute of Banking and Finance said.

"The fall in the exchange rate benefits UK exporters by lowering prices and helps the domestic producer by making their products more price competitive and does not affect the rate of inflation: win win win for the UK economy."

'Selective' immigration

Peter Hargreaves, a founding partner of retail investment company Hargreaves Lansdown, said Britain could encourage the right type of immigration. Mr Hargreaves has been a prominent campaigner for the leave campaign and a major donor, although the firm he co-founded has remained neutral on the vote.

"We need immigrants, lots of them," he told the BBC.

"But we need to make sure it's the type of immigration we want so we can be selective and take the people that will make us prosper."

Other business figures that campaigned for a British departure from the EU included vacuum entrepreneur James Dyson and Tim Martin of the JD Wetherspoon pub chain.

Most leaders of the UK's largest firms came out in favour of a 'Remain' vote.

But some well-known voices have suggested that the British economy will not be adversely affected in the long term by leaving the EU. The investor Neil Woodford wrote in his blog that the vote to leave was not 'as negative a development' as the market's first reaction indicated.

The FTSE 100 initially fell by around 8% on Friday morning, but regained some of its value later in the day to close 3.15% down. The pound ended the day 7.5% down against the dollar.

Related Topics

More on this story

Around the BBC