German industry welcomes Brexit delay but warns against complacency

The European Council agreed to a six-month extension of the Brexit process early on Thursday morning, setting a new deadline for Britain to leave the European Union on Oct. 31, 2019.

After the latest Brexit delay, German industry has remained cautious over giving the all-clear and is hoping that the British House of Commons will provide legal clarity as soon as possible, according to statements made by representatives on Thursday.

German industry federations welcomed the extension of the Brexit deadline to prevent a no-deal scenario but reiterated that the ongoing uncertainty would remain a challenge to companies in the EU as well as Britain.

Ingo Kramer, president of the confederation of German employers’ associations (BDA), welcomed the extended deadline but said that it had “not yet created any certainty for the individuals and companies concerned”.

Holger Bingmann, president of German association of wholesale, foreign trade and services (BGA), stated that “the EU has opted for the lesser evil. Chaos would not serve anyone”.

Bingmann noted, however, that the economic price for this was “paralyzing uncertainty” for companies on both sides of the English Channel.

The National Association of German Cooperative Banks (BVR) said that the ongoing uncertainty was negatively impacting the investment climate. BVR board member Andreas Martin stressed that the postponement period should “be used to find solutions as quickly as possible”.

The European Council agreed to a six-month extension of the Brexit process early on Thursday morning, setting a new deadline for Britain to leave the European Union on Oct. 31, 2019.