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Cumbria Chamber of Commerce reacts to Brexit vote

Photo: PA

The Cumbria Chamber of Commerce has issued a statement in the wake of the UK's decision to leave the European Union.

The statement says that "Cumbria has been a major beneficiary of EU funding over the years" but stresses that businesses in the county must "all work together to address the challenges facing our economy":

Some businesses will have been hoping for just this result, others for quite the opposite.

As the Chamber we were not surprised by the result and always knew that it would be tight.

Cameron's resignation is not unexpected but is disappointing given that the leadership beauty campaign is likely to become a real distractor. It should not be allowed to get in the way of planning and discussion in the run up to the government invoking Article 50 and triggering the formal exit period.

From a Cumbrian perspective, clearly Cumbria has been a major beneficiary of EU funding over the years, although this has brought an added level of bureaucracy which in turn has a cost and does dictates where we focus activity supported with EU Funding. As a Chamber we have been very instrumental in bidding for and winning EU funding, accessing tens of millions of pounds for Cumbrian business.

Following yesterday's decision we will be working hard in our role as a Cumbrian economic partner, seeking to ensure that government is held to its responsibility and promises that funding to support economic growth would not be lost. We will seek out and find ways of ensuring that funding on behalf of Cumbrian businesses.

On wider business issues, we will be pushing government to have in place a clear, time framed plan and process on what will happen moving forward. That is absolutely fundamental to stabilising the situation we are now in.

We will be pushing government on the detail around this, including real world issues facing Cumbrian businesses - such as what will happen around migrant workers in the UK now, through the transition period and beyond? These are issues that the government needs to work through and addressed.

Uncertainty always means a level of instability. Whatever your views on the outcome the critical thing now is that we all work together to address the challenges facing our economy.

The Chamber will continue over the coming months and years to keep you informed as the situation becomes clearer and to work with partners to support Cumbrian businesses as we make our way together through the challenges and changes ahead.

– Cumbria Chamber of Commerce Statement

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