Britain's vote on Thursday to leave the European Union is generating a variety of strong reactions in Europe's chemical, manufacturing and scientific communities.
From the Guardian:
“The United Kingdom is and will remain an important market for BASF," said Kurt Bock, right, the company's chief executive. "It has always been our strong conviction that the UK is better off within the EU, we therefore very much regret that Great Britain and Northern Ireland want to leave the European Union. Although we respect the decision of the British people, this outcome of the referendum will cause considerable uncertainty for markets, companies and households.”
From the Engineer:
“Great care must be taken during the negotiation process to protect manufacturing’s interests and we will be working hard in the UK and in Brussels for that outcome," said James Selka, chief executive of the UK's Manufacturing Technology Association. "We believe that we can leverage UK manufacturing’s reputation for innovation and flexibility to secure the best possible deal for our members outside the EU.”
From ICIS News:
A European ethylene glycol (EG) buyer said he was sad to see the UK leaving the EU but added, however, that the country should be “happy” that it will no longer be subject to the “Euro printing press that is destroying pensions [and] creating housing bubbles.”
“It’s like a domino effect," said another EG buyer. "… Let the dust settle first and see what happens. All these contracts the UK has with other EU partners have to be revised. What will be the economic effect on all economies?”
A polyethylene terephthalate buyer in Italy said Brexit was “a disaster” and will create a chain of events in the economy and forecast more countries to take the same path than the UK.
Other petrochemical market players reminded how “nothing will change for two years” at least, according to an olefins consumer in Germany, while others recognize the implications are totally unknown – it is the first time an EU member state has decided to leave the bloc.
From Chemistry World:
"EU membership has been part of the UK in broad and deep ways," said Dominic Tildesley, president of the Royal Society of Chemistry. "From the point of view of science, research and innovation there is now considerable uncertainty about how an EU exit will affect access to EU funding for research, the freedom of researchers to work across the EU and the application of EU regulations across the science and technology sector."
From European Rubber Journal [registration required]:
“It is not the decision that our sector wanted, but we fully respect the wish of the people for change,” said Steve Elliott, chief executive of the United Kingdom's Chemical Industries Association. “We now have to look to the future, and I am confident that an important and resilient industry such as ours can prosper in this new situation.”
“The vast majority of our members had fears of Brexit, and we will be consulting with them and government in the coming weeks to set out a plan for continued low carbon energy investment, deployment and assurance of the 117,000 jobs in this sector," said Dr. Nina Skorupska, chief executive at the UK's Renewable Energy Association.