Four global leaders on what Brexit really means

A British Union flag flies in front of an EU flag during a pro-EU referendum event at Parliament Square

Image: REUTENeil Hall

Mark Jones
Head of Digital Content, The World Economic Forum
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Global leaders, CEOs, and other influential figures gathered at the World Economic Forum’s annual meeting in Tianjin, China have been reacting to Friday’s news that Britain is to leave the European Union following a referendum.

Ian Bremmer, President and Founder, Eurasia Group

"You are talking about the diminishment of the most important alliance in the post-war order, the transatlantic relationship, which was already before Brexit at its weakest since World War Two. You're talking about not only the removal of the UK from the EU, but you're also talking, I think reasonably likely, about the eventual disintegration in further part of the UK itself. And you're also talking at the very least about the severe diminishment of what the EU actually means, its footprint globally, its common values and its ability to continue to integrate."


Professor Nouriel Roubini, New York University

“I don’t expect a global recession or another global financial crisis. I think that the shock that comes from Brexit is significant but not of the same size and magnitude as the one we had in 2007, 8 and 9. However, I would say it is a major significant financial shock as the reaction of the markets on Friday suggested. It creates a whole bunch of economic, financial, political and also geopolitical uncertainties.”


CloudFlare CEO Matthew Prince

“We chose London specifically because it was a great point from which to recruit from across all of Europe, and I worry that that legally is going to get more difficult. Even more importantly, a bunch of our team got together right after the vote. A number of them were EU citizens but not UK citizens, and the overwhelming response was that for these incredibly talented, incredibly highly compensated, skilled workers who any country in the world would be lucky to count as residents, they said for the first time we don't feel welcome in London any more.”


Michael Falcon, CEO Global Investment Management Asia Pacific at J.P. Morgan

“I think we're going to see as we move into this week and even weeks beyond more volatility, as the speculation ebbs and flows, as the path becomes more clear or at times perhaps less certain. Whether that's rumours spreading, or failed attempts to change or moderate course. People's emotions can rise or fall.”


Follow the debate: Simon Smiles, Rachel Morarjee and Nouriel Roubini discuss the implications of Brexit at the 2016 Meeting of the New Champions in Tianjin, China. Watch the video here.

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