Wednesday 28 September 2016

Rolls-Royce bosses warn staff that business could be harmed by Brexit

Published 02/03/2016 | 23:47

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Rolls-Royce bosses have warned British staff that the business could be harmed by exit from the European Union.

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In a letter to employees, chief executive Torsten Muller-Otvos said there was no guarantee the UK would be granted free trade with the EU if it voted to leave.

Versions of the message, leaked to the Guardian, have been circulated to around 8,000 workers at the firm and other subsidiaries of the BMW Group.

While stressing the final decision would be for the British people in the looming referendum, Mr Muller-Otvos wrote: "Free trade is important for international business. Rolls-Royce Motor Cars exports motor cars throughout the EU and imports a significant number of parts through the region.

"For BMW Group, more than half of MINIs built and virtually all the engines and components made in the UK are exported to the EU, with over 150,000 new cars and many hundreds of thousands of parts imported from Europe each year.

"Tariff barriers would mean higher costs and higher prices and we cannot assume that the UK would be granted free trade with Europe from outside the EU.

"Our employment base could also be affected, with skilled men and women from most EU countries included in the 30 nationalities currently represented at the home of Rolls-Royce here at Goodwood."

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