WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The United Kingdom has surprisingly moved one position up in the 2017 A.T. Kearney Foreign Direct Investment Confidence Index amid the process to leave the European Union also known as Brexit, A.T. Kearney Chairman Emeritus Paul Laudicina told Sputnik on Tuesday.
"The investors last year told us that they would be concerned about Britain’s investment worthiness if Brexit succeeded. So, we were little surprised to see after Brexit this year that Britain actually not only didn’t decline actually went up," Laudicina said.
When asked why Brexit did not affect this year’s UK index, Laudicina explained, "First of all, the terms of Brexit were not clear yet, so investors, looking outside in, wonder what is Brexit going to actually mean, will they still have access to the market."
Second, Laudicina added, "investors who want to have a position in the British market will invest in Britain, because if they feel they cant do it from outside Britain in the EU there is more of a reason to be in Britain, if they are looking to maintain a position in that market."
However, Laudicina acknowledged there is also a possibility the terms may still impact the country’s Foreign Direct Investment Confidence Index once they become clear.
"If Britain becomes more isolated and more difficult to access it might diminish Britain’s attractiveness as an investment destination," Laudicina said.
On March 29, the United Kingdom triggered the EU withdrawal process by handing a formal letter to European Council President Donald Tusk. According to Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty, the United Kingdom now has two years to complete the negotiations, and must leave the European Union on March 29, 2019.
A.T. Kearney is a global management consulting firm with offices in more than 40 countries.