Vodafone Group Plc, weighing the impact of the U.K. vote to quit the European Union, said it’ll consider moving its headquarters elsewhere unless the country negotiates continued access to the European Union’s single market and workers.
The mobile operator, which is based in Newbury, England, and has offices in central London, hasn’t decided on the long-term location of its headquarters, and is monitoring the U.K.’s response to last week’s referendum, it said Tuesday in an e-mailed statement. The decision will depend on whether the company retains access to the EU’s “freedom of movement of people, capital and goods,” Vodafone said.
“It remains unclear at this point how many of those positive attributes will remain in place once the process of the U.K.’s exit from the European Union has been completed,” Vodafone said. “It is therefore not yet possible to draw any firm conclusions regarding the long-term location for the headquarters of the group.”
Vodafone dangled the possibility of a move as business leaders step up efforts to lobby the U.K. government to strike a business-friendly deal governing the country’s future relationship with the EU. It’s one of the clearest indications yet of the potential economic fallout from the decision, given that Vodafone employs about 13,000 workers in the U.K.
Corporate leaders met Tuesday with U.K. Business Secretary Sajid Javid to press their case. Some leaders of the “Leave” campaign have said they want to curb immigration even while maintaining tariff-free access to the other 27 EU nations, but Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany said Tuesday that the U.K. will not be permitted to “cherry pick” policies in any deal with the EU.
“The biggest issue raised was the need to secure continued access to the single market,” Javid said at a press conference after the meeting, which was attended by officials including Andrew Witty, chief …Read More
Source:: Nigerian Pilot