A clear message from the steering group, made up of representatives from sectors including manufacturing, automotive, construction, legal, leisure and logistics was that the government needs to be clear and let everyone know the timescale for exiting the EU.
The session was chaired by David Burton, a Chamber board member, who said that businesses hate uncertainty and need more information on the timescales for exiting the EU and crucially on what arrangements will be put in place to deal with key issues like customs procedures and access to labour and skills.
“There were very clear messages that were coming out of this latest meeting of the Brexit Club,” David said. “The main one was about making sure that all businesses have a timeline for leaving the EU.
“Businesses want to plan for the future, but at the moment there is a lot of uncertainty and they need some clarity.
“There are crucial issues such as access to labour, skills, customs procedures and regulations and our representatives want to know that government has plans in place to minimise any potential disruption to business when we leave the EU.
“But, despite that uncertainty, industries such as automotive, aerospace and leisure, said that lately they have experienced an upsurge in business.
“This is positive news, but again questions were raised about whether it was because of the exchange rate of the pound against the euro and whether this buoyancy will continue after Brexit.
“We will continue to collate all of the issues raised and make sure that they are all passed on to decision makers, so that they know exactly how businesses are feeling around the issue of Brexit.”
Alicia Law, Director at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy also attended the meeting and was very interested with the points that were made.
Louise Bennett, chief executive of the Chamber, added: “Once again the Chamber’s Brexit Club raised some extremely important issues that need addressing.
“It is crucial that businesses throughout Coventry and Warwickshire know exactly when and how the exit from the EU is going to happen.
“We will be lobbying the Government on all of these issues, make them aware of how businesses are feeling, what they are thinking and try to get some firm answers.
“Brexit will be at the forefront of Chamber of Commerce activity in the coming months with key presentations at our Annual Business and Economic Conference on November 3 and a dedicated event called Making Brexit Work for Coventry & Warwickshire taking place as part of the Business Festival on November 22.”