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Record number of Brits consider Brexit a mistake

Record number of Brits consider Brexit a mistake Record number of Brits say Brexit was wrong choice and want to return to EU (Getty Images)
Author: Maria Kholina

The number of Britons considering Brexit a mistake hit a new record high in July, according to a survey from pollsters YouGov, as reported by Reuters.

The survey revealed that, with few economic benefits to show for the June 2016 vote to leave the European Union, 57% of Britons said the decision to leave the European Union in 2016 was the wrong one, compared with 32% who thought it was correct.

More than half - 55% - said they would vote to rejoin the EU, against 31% who said they would stay out, if a referendum were to be held today.

YouGov indicated that the survey results marked a "moderate shift" compared to January 2021 when 49% of respondents said they would vote for joining, and 37% favored leaving the EU.

In May, British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak defended Brexit, citing policies such as free ports and reduced VAT that would supposedly make some goods cheaper. However, economists say that freeports, which are special zones containing tax and customs reliefs and simplified trade regulations, are unlikely to significantly boost Britain's economy and may have limited value as a tool for regional development.

British business investment has barely grown since mid-2016, in contrast with other advanced economies. While Brexit-supporting economists point to the fact that capital grew strongly in the years leading up 2016 and was bound to slow, business surveys point to Brexit as one cause of the stagnation.

The YouGov survey of more than 2,000 British people showed 63% now regard Brexit as more of a failure than a success, compared with 12% who saw it as more of a success. A further 18% said it was neither.


In 2016, the UK held a referendum on its EU membership, resulting in the decision to leave the European Union. The exit from the EU officially took place on January 31 to February 1, 2020, while the country remained part of the single economic space until the end of 2020.

In recent years, the UK has been contemplating normalizing its economic relations with the EU. Prime Minister Rishi Sunak privately requested officials and dignitaries to develop plans to restore relations between the UK and the European Union.

The British government has reportedly considered adopting Swiss-style economic ties with the EU to facilitate "frictionless" trade with EU countries for the first time post-Brexit.