Business leaders worried about impact of political uncertainty, poll finds

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Business leaders have voiced concern about the political uncertainty gripping the country and its impact on the economy.

The first poll of businesses since the General Election reveals a "dramatic drop" in confidence, said the Institute of Directors (IoD).

Company directors see no clear way to resolve the political situation quickly and believe another election this year would have a negative impact on the UK economy.

The 700 members of the IoD who took part in the survey said they were keen to see quick agreement with the European Union on transitional arrangements surrounding the UK's withdrawal, and clarity on the status of EU workers in the UK.

The overall priority for the new Government must be reaching a new trade deal with the European Union, the directors said.

Stephen Martin, director general of the IoD, said: "It is hard to overstate what a dramatic impact the current political uncertainty is having on business leaders, and the consequences could - if not addressed immediately - be disastrous for the UK economy. 

"The needs of business and discussion of the economy were largely absent from the campaign, but this crash in confidence shows how urgently that must change in the new Government.

"It was disheartening that the only reference the Prime Minister made to prosperity in her Downing Street statement was to emphasise the need to share it, rather than create it in the first place. 

"With global headwinds and political uncertainty at the front of business leaders' minds, it would be wise for this administration to re-emphasise its commitment to a pro-business environment here at home."