When it comes to Brexit, there’s only one thing the UK population agrees on – both the government and the EU are handling the exit negotiations poorly.
However, according to the latest research from pricing experts Simon-Kucher & Partners, the nation continues to be polarised as to what agreement it wants the Brexit divorce talks to deliver.
Simon-Kucher has been tracking the population’s views on Brexit since the referendum last year.
While both Leavers and Remainers both agree on the priorities for a successful settlement – immigration, jurisdiction, and free movement – these are the areas where both sides want fundamentally different outcomes.
UK managing partner at Simon-Kucher, Mark Billige explained: “It is nearly 16 months since the referendum on the UK leaving the EU, and our research shows that the two sides remain at complete odds with each other; although, at least there is increasing agreement over which are the key areas to disagree on.”
The majority of the population is reportedly unimpressed with the negotiations so far, with 59% of people feeling they are being handled ‘poorly’ or ‘very poorly’ by the UK, and 60% feeling they are being handled ‘poorly’ or ‘very poorly’ by the EU.
Billige added: “The most significant change in perception is by Leavers. In April, 34% of Leavers thought the government was handling the negotiations ‘well’ or ‘very well’. That has now dropped to only 9%.”
Dr. Peter Colman, partner at Simon-Kucher, commented: “With a minority government and a divided country, there is little chance that businesses will get the end to ‘uncertainty’ that so many desire.
“For those businesses that have not done so already, it is time for them to take charge of their pricing to protect margins.
“Regardless of our future trading relationship with the EU, the current reality for costs and volume is volatility. There are many unknowns, ranging from exchange rates fluctuations, raw material cost movements and customer confidence.
“A stronger focus on price management will help ensure that they aren’t buffeted by currency traders reacting to every forward and backward step observed during the long negotiation process being played out in Brussels.”