European Council: 24th October 2016

Anna Soubry (Broxtowe) (Con)
Rolls-Royce, a magnificent British company, employs a number of my constituents and offers many of them fantastic apprenticeships. I went to see them on Friday and they told me about their concerns, which are shared throughout the whole of the aerospace sector and other sectors, such as the automotive sector, about the consequences of our nation leaving—if it does—the single market and the customs union. Will the Prime Minister give an assurance to British businesses that she will listen to their needs and concerns as we now move to leave the European Union?
 
The Prime Minister
My right hon. Friend makes an important point about the quality of businesses that we have here in the United Kingdom. Rolls-Royce is one of those businesses that sets a fine example, including in the way it takes on apprentices. The way in which it has contributed to the growth of our economy is very important. I and all those involved in the negotiations will be listening to business. That work has already started and my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union has already been holding those discussions. I have held a number of roundtables with business to hear their concerns from them. The overwhelming view that has come to me is that, given that we have taken the decision to leave the European Union, business wants to work with us to make sure that we make every success of the opportunities to us outside the EU.