Business leaders sign letter backing Britain remaining in the EU

Helen Cahill
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51 FTSE 100 bosses have backed Britain staying in the EU (Source: Getty)

The bosses of more than half of the UK's biggest companies have called for voters to back Britain staying in the EU in tomorrow's vote.

Directors from 51 FTSE 100 companies have signed a letter to voice their support for the UK remaining in the EU, saying a British exit "would put jobs at risk".

Over 1,280 executives signed the letter to the Times, including Barclays' John McFarlane, who had not yet expressed his views on tomorrow's vote. A total 1.75m people are employed by the companies on the said, according to Remain.

The letter says: "We know our firms are stronger in Europe. Our reasons are straightforward: businesses and their employees benefit massively from being able to trade inside the world's largest single market without barriers.

"We know that Britain leaving the EU would mean having to re-establish terms of trade from scratch with our home market of 500m customers. That wouldn't just hurt exporters, but the hundred of thousands of small and medium firms who do business with them.

"Even those that want Britain to leave say that, in the short-term, Brexit would lead to economic uncertainty and would put jobs at risk. Smaller businesses and the people they employ are particularly vulnerable to any economic shock which could follow a vote to leave the EU."

The letter was co-ordinated by Britain Stronger in Europe's Gabe Winn, who previously ran communications for FTSE 100 company Centrica Energy, parent of British Gas.

Yesterday, Oxford Economics produced a report saying Brexit could create a fallout on the scale of the Lehman Brothers collapse, and Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen warned leaving the EU would have "significant repercussions" for Britain.

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