More than 70% of event planners want to stay in the EU

More than 70% of event planners are in favour of Britain staying in the EU, according to a snap poll carried out by C&IT.

More than 70% of event planners are in favour of staying in the EU
More than 70% of event planners are in favour of staying in the EU

This weekend David Cameron announced 23 June as the date for the EU referendum, which is considered one of the biggest political decisions in the last decade.

A flash Twitter poll by C&IT, based on the opinions of more than 40 planners, showed that some 73% of industry planners are not in favour of the 'Brexit'.

Sam Robson, group events director for global events UK at The Appointment Group, said that being part of Europe meant the events industry could forge better relationships with clients and suppliers. "I don’t think the disruption of leaving would do the events industry any favours. We do a lot of business in Europe and have a large number of European clients. I feel leaving would give the impression that we are no longer part of the same community."

Helen Seaman, managing director at Rapiergroup, disagrees, arguing that Britain should leave the EU, as an exit will put the country in a better position to negotiate with Europe. "I don’t think David Cameron has put forward a good deal. I also don’t believe that an exit from the EU will affect trading or business in the UK. Countries will still want to do business here, regardless of whether or not we are part of the EU."

Business Visits & Events Board chair, Nick de Bois, also said it was time for the UK to leave the EU. "The events sector is no different to other businesses in that they can, and many do, thrive outside the EU, which has fast become an un-competitive trading block that does not suit the entreprenuerial spirit of Britain's businesses of the future. Perhaps that's why in London alone, the majority of the 975,000 small and medium-sized firms say that EU regulation makes it harder for them to hire."

Other event planners are currently undecided, and will wait for further information on both sides of the argument. "In terms of economic collaboration, it makes sense to be part of Europe," said Dale Parmenter, CEO of drp. "But economically and socially it makes it difficult, as many people don’t want these decisions dictated to us by Brussels. I want to analyse both sides of the argument before I make a decision. We need to speak to our clients, too, and decide what will be best for the industry as a whole."

Do you think the events industry would be better in or out of the EU? Vote today in our Twitter poll here

More:

Slowdown in emerging markets poses greatest threat to event planners

UK events industry votes Conservative

The big debate: Will the new Tory government support the events industry?

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