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Six things we learnt from the EU referendum

The United Kingdoms historic vote to leave the European Union surprised millions
around the world. The subsequent explosion in media commentary and market turmoil
has done little to guide, reassure or unite people around a path forward.
CNC has listed the six things you need to know.
Our aim is to help you understand the impact of Brexit.

A nation divided and a call for unity


The result revealed stark differences across geographies and age groups in the UK.
While most of the governing elite and professionals in the South East voted Remain,
many older voters across the UK and a signicant percentage of the electorate in Wales,
the Midlands and the North voted out.
The result has sparked an emotional response by those who feel the margin of victory is too
small with many blaming ignorance and social demographics for the result.
The UK today is a divided society. Many families are divided, too.
One of the key challenges facing the government and next Prime Minister
is to unite the nation.

FACT : 52% of voters chose Leave. But there was a huge generational divide:
75% of people aged 18-24 voted Remain. Among those aged 65 and older,
only 39% did.
The result surprised nancial markets, politicians, commentators and businesses.
Most expected a Remain victory.

UK & European politicians were not prepared for the result,


and it will change the faces of politics.
With some in the Leave camp conceding defeat late on the day of the vote, it seems
that until the results came in all sides had expected a Remain vote.
Fast-forward 12 hours and the impact was seismic. David Cameron announced his
intention to resign as Prime Minister. The same day saw the stirrings of a no-condence
motion against the opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn. Labour MPs accused him failing to
convince Labour voters to vote Remain, and indeed of actively sabotaging the Remain
campaign. The Scottish First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, started pushing for a second
referendum on Scotlands independence.
Meanwhile, the Liberal Democrats the fourth largest political party in Westminster
will go into the next general election with a pledge to take the UK back into the EU.

FACT: A vote of no-condence in the opposition leader, Jeremy Corbyn, has been
tabled. Two-thirds of his shadow cabinet have resigned in the wake of the vote.

The Government and Bank of England had prepared, but were


powerless to stop the shock to the markets.
The Governor of the Bank of England responded quickly to reassure the markets.
However, sterling suffered its biggest one-day sell-off in recent history, and the Brexit
result wiped $2 trillion off the S&P Global Broad Market Index.
The long-term impact remains to be seen, but bank stocks and housebuilders in the FTSE
350 suffered particularly badly as many investors forecast a UK recession, leaving them
susceptible to takeover bids. Yields on 10-year government bonds sank below 1% for the
rst time on Monday.

FACT : In morning-after trading, the FTSE100 plunged as much as 8%, but


recovered to close down 3%. Interestingly, stock markets around Europe saw
bigger losses: the French CAC closed down 8%, while Germany's DAX index
dropped 10% before closing down 6.8%. The main indices in Italy and Spain
both dropped more than 12%. Second-day trading on Monday followed a similar
path. On Monday evening, after markets closed, S&P announced it was
downgrading the UKs credit rating by two notches from AAA to AA.

So, the UK is leaving the EU. Arent we?


The formal process of negotiating an exit from the EU will start once the UK formally triggers
Article 50. This has not yet happened, and despite expectations that it would happen
immediately after the vote, it now wont happen until a new Prime Minister is in place as late
as 2 September. EU leaders want it to happen sooner rather than later.
Brexiteers now want to trigger Article 50 only once its clear what kind of UK-EU relationship
is on offer. At the same time, Remain campaigners are desperately seeking ways to challenge
the implementation of the referendum. The success of these challenges remains to be seen,
but it seems unlikely any government could entirely ignore the vote. However, with
David Camerons resignation and the resulting leadership contest, will there be calls for
another general election before the referendum can be implemented?
And could that election somehow revoke Brexit?

FACT : The referendum was in fact only advisory. The implications of this are still
unclear. Furthermore, in 2014 Scotland voted narrowly to remain part of the UK
- on the premise of continued EU membership. The Brexit vote is now prompting
Scottish politicians to call for a second independence referendum.

The EU is under scrutiny from within.


Many Leave supporters have long decried the power of unelected politicians in Europe.
Even the Remain voters saw the EU as better the devil you know. While European
leaders rallied to protect the union, some have started to look at the EUs internal
problems that led to the referendum. And Jean-Claude Juncker, the President of the
European Commission, is under re for his handling of the negotiations with the UK
earlier in the year.

Global impact.

The reverberations of Brexit are being felt beyond Europe. Some fear Brexit could
cause the next global recession, while others cite poor economic data and stock
market performance pointing in the same direction. EU leaders are concerned about
contagion. Some EU politicians from fringe parties are already calling for referenda
in their countries. Many also worry about the impact of this result on the upcoming
US elections.

FACT : Despite much speculation, the extent of the impact of Brexit remains to
be seen. The fundamentals of the UK economy have not changed (yet) this is
still one of the strongest economies in Europe.

Chinas Reaction.
Chinese Prime Minister
Li Keqiang

Chinese Prime Minister Li Keqiang addressed the opening ceremony of Summer


Davos in Tianjian last Saturday and he said European countries are important
partners for China. Under the new circumstances, China will continue to maintain
and grow its relations with the EU and the UK. We hope to see a united and stable
EU and a stable and prosperous UK, and that the worlds major economies, while
making macro-economic policies, should consider not just their own growth needs
but also the spillover effects of their policies.

The President of Asia Infrastructure


Investment Bank Jin Liqun

The President of Asia Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) Jin Liqun said at its rst
annual meeting in Beijing that the decision will not affect the UK's position as a major
shareholder in the AIIB, and that We certainly believe that whatever happens in the
follow-up of Brexit, the United Kingdom [] will continue to play an important role in the
development of this bank. UK was among the 57 founding members of AIIB that launched
ofcially in January with USD 100 billion in capital. Former British Treasury Minister
Danny Alexander is one of the vice-presidents in the bank, which has China, India and
Russia as the biggest shareholders.
The Founder of China Wanda Group
Wang Jianlin

The founder of China Wanda Group, and richest man in the country Wang Jianlin said
Brexit would not be a smart choice for the UK, and a bunch of Chinese companies
would move elsewhere in the event of Brexit in February this year.

EU is the second-largest trading partner for China. In 2015, Chinese companies invested
Euro 23 billion in the EU, increased 44% from the previous year.
Among which, Germany, UK and France are the big three investment destinations for
Chinese companies so far.

MSLGROUP China with 200 staff in 5 ofces are dedicated to provide


multinational companies operating inside and outside China with the
most updated and in-depth insights from global markets on worlds
pressing issues.
The heated debate around topics such as the beginning of
de-globalization, the rising of populism ideology, Chinas
structure reform and the major-country diplomacy approach
are shaping the strategy and decision-making of companies every day.

MSLGROUP is Publicis Groupes strategic communications


and engagement group with more then 3,000 staff in 100 ofces around
the world. MSLGROUP will provide a series of updates from inside UK to
our global network.
As one of the world's leading international strategic communications
consultancies, CNC - Communications & Network Consulting advises
large corporations, mid-cap companies, institutions and individuals on
all aspects of strategic communications. CNC is part of MSLGROUP,
and has around 150 employees at 11 ofces.

AND FINALLY - WATCH THIS SPACE


These are key events to watch:
Conservative leadership contest to become the next Prime Minister
- nominations by Wednesday, results by early September.
Labour party vote of no-condence in its leader Jeremy Corbyn.
UK markets vs European markets - who will be the true losers?
EU meetings in Brussels this week.

Anna Davies, CNC, Anna.Davies@cnc-communications.com +44 203 219 8807

Lusha Niu, MSLGROUP China, Lusha.Niu@mslgroup.com +86 21 5169 9311