On 2 October 2019 the NBCC Brexit Forum Dinner took place at the Residency of the Dutch Ambassador to the United Kingdom, Simon Smits, as a follow up to the successful NBCC North Sea Neighbours Dinner 2019 “Shaping the Future Together”. The objective of this event was for HE Ambassador Smits to hear the views of our members about Brexit. The NBCC aims to involve our members and guests as fully as possible on the context surrounding the UK exiting the European Union.
After the opening remarks of HE Simon Smits and our Chairman Anton Valk CBE, we were delighted to share insights just after the British PM announced the new UK proposal and only 29 days to Brexit. Themes such as the new UK proposal, a possible Brexit fatigue, the Withdrawal Agreement, duration of an extension, impact on SME’s, preparations for a deal and the long-term outlook of British-Dutch business relations were discussed by members of the NBCC Brexit Forum: Jan-Willem Thoen from PWC, James Smith from ING and Phillip Souta from Clifford Chance. With regard to the new UK proposals, Phillip Souta commented that he estimated a 25% chance of a final agreement (because it’s better than no-deal) and 75% likelihood of winning Commons approval (likelihood of ratification clearly makes a UK/EU deal more likely).
A deal could ensure continuity for businesses that operate in both countries. This is crucial as the UK is the third largest export market for the Netherlands worldwide, while the Netherlands is equally the UK’s third largest export destination (comes even before China). Bilateral trade and investments between our two countries are worth billions per year and create a considerable number of job opportunities. With the goal of fostering a long-standing UK-Dutch relationship even after the UK leaves the European Union, best practices must be continuously shared among NBCC members and professional insights provided by renowned experts.
The NBCC looks back on a successful dinner with special thanks to His Excellency Simon Smits, Dutch Ambassador to the United Kingdom, and his team at the Embassy and the Residency. A special thanks goes to our NBCC Brexit Forum Strategic Partners for sharing their knowledge and expertise.