How Will Brexit Affect the Tech Industry as the U.K. Leaves the EU?

Yesterday?EU?s historic decision by British voters to leave the European Union (EU) is already sending shockwaves throughout global markets and the international business community. While British and European citizens and companies will be most affected by the decision, the U.K.?EU?s exit is also likely to create major problems for the global technology industry.

"Likely?EU? because the truth is, nobody knows for certain what will happen. No nation in the EU?EU?s history has ever opted to abandon the union, putting the world in truly uncharted waters today. At the very least, the seismic shift in the political status quo will lead to years of uncertainty.

Loss of Tech Talent

While U.K. voters chose to leave the EU by a 52-48 margin, the U.K.?EU?s tech industry was overwhelmingly in favor of staying. Three-quarters of British startups opposed the decision to leave, saying that leaving the union will likely reduce the amount of funding British tech startups can expect to receive from U.S. investors, according to a study by Silicon Valley Bank.

The decision to leave the EU also throws much of the U.K.?EU?s technology industry into limbo. At the moment, EU nationals have the right to live and work freely in the U.K., allowing the continent?EU?s top tech talent to work anywhere they want. The EU?EU?s freedom of movement rule has allowed London to establish itself as the region?EU?s most important technology hub.

While it is possible that Britain will be able to come to some sort of agreement with the EU to maintain freedom of movement, such a deal is far from certain. Much of the original impetus for the Brexit (British exit) referendum stemmed from the fears of British voters that too many EU nationals were immigrating to the U.K. That skepticism toward immigrant labor is unlikely to disappear.

Regulatory Uncertainty

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