Friday 15 December 2017

Greencore's Patrick Coveney: Britain will vote to leave EU and it will be bad for Ireland

Greencore chief executive Patrick Coveney
Greencore chief executive Patrick Coveney

Greencore chief executive Patrick Coveney thinks Britain will vote to leave the European Union next week, writes Gavin McLoughlin.

Coveney said it would be "very very bad" for the Irish, European and world economies if Britons voted for a so called Brexit.

"My personal judgment is that that's what they're going to do...I don't think it's like Scotland where the simple shock value enabled the Scottish people to come back from the precipice," he said.

Coveney said he thought there would be an outflow of resources from the UK on "a pretty massive scale" if Brexit happens.

He said Brexit would be negative but not catastrophic for Greencore, adding that the company's costs would rise due to probable weakness in sterling and its revenues would probably fall due to reduced British demand.

He said restrictions on the free movement of people would have a modestly negative effect on the business.

Coveney, a brother of Housing Minister Simon Coveney, was speaking at a Dublin Chamber of Commerce event this morning. The vast majority of Greencore's business takes place in the UK.

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