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Freelancers undecided over potential impact of 2017 EU referendum

A survey carried out by contractors group PCG, shows that “the jury is still out” over the impact any changes to the UK’s membership of the EU would have on freelancers. [NP4K5VVGS7WA]

Following the Prime Minister’s pledge to hold an ‘in-out’ referendum on Britain’s membership of the EU by the end of 2017, the freelancers’ organisation polled its site visitors to gauge how freelance professionals felt about a possible change in our country’s relationship with Europe.

Like the country as a whole, the results show that the contracting community are undecided over how a change in status may affect the industry. According to the results, 36% felt that a UK removal from the EU would have a ‘wholly negative’ impact on their work prospects, 15% said that such a move would be ‘positive’, and almost half (49%) said that it would most likely make no difference at all to freelancers.

Andrew Chamberlain, PCG’s Senior Policy Adviser on Europe, said that the reaction was unsurprising given the number of unknowns involved. He said that many contractors and freelancers work for multinational clients, and the number of contractors seeking work in Europe is also on the increase.

“Anything that has the potential to affect their access to these clients is bound to cause an element of consternation.”

The group’s MD, John Brazier, said that freelancers can provide a very useful insight into the real state of the economy, as they often are the first to benefit in boom times, but also more vulnerable from economic downturns, “often making them the ‘budgie in the mine’ for the economy.”

You can find out more about PCG, and the benefits of membership here.

“Britain would do well to heed their caution. Any change in Britain’s relationship with the European Union needs to be carefully considered so as not to harm the UK’s smallest businesses.”

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