ROME — As the referendum on whether the United Kingdom will stay in the European Union fast approaches, The Expat Survey are discovering how British expats are feeling with the Big BreXpat Survey. The first results of the BreXpat survey have been released on the awareness and feelings surrounding the EU referendum in the UK that will be held on June 23, the survey itself can be found at www.theexpatsurvey.com and is open until May 31 to record the sentiments of any British citizen living overseas. The information gathered thus far has shown that 95 percent of those that have taken the survey are aware of their eligibility to vote, whilst 92 percent know that they lose their right to vote after 15 years and a still relatively high percentage of 83 are aware that it is possible to register to vote online. So far 61 percent of those surveyed have registered to vote, with the main reason for those that haven’t being the 15-year rule, making it 68 percent saying that will be voting in Brexit. Of that number 73 percent feel that they are equipped with enough knowledge to make an informed decision when voting. As tensions begin to run high in Britain, it’s no different for Brits living abroad with 72 percent saying they are concerned about the outcome of the referendum. In the meantime 44 percent say they feel anxious, 23 percent betrayed and 11 percent are angry. When directly asked whether or not they wished to remain in the EU, 68 percent said they would like to stay in, whilst 32 percent voted out. The top three scenarios for expats if Britain were to leave the EU were reported to be: 1. Take dual or solo nationality of the country where they are resident. 2. Sell all UK assets and investments held in the UK, and stop paying any tax in the UK system. 3. Reluctantly return to the UK if their financial position deteriorates as a result of the exit. The Big BreXpat Survey is due to close on May 31, at which point the results will be sent to the leaders of each political party, the Electoral Commission and the media. For those who wish to still have their say, the survey can be found at: https://www.research.net/r/Brexit2016. – See more at: http://www.italianinsider.it/?q=node/3860#sthash.u2GwLIKk.dpuf
Its gloves off as world’s largest expat research unit offers UK expats a true voice on Brexit!
Some of the promoted benefits of Britain being a member of the European Union have been freedom of movement, the ability to retire or work overseas with ease within its member states; and to even wholly own freehold assets and other investments.
Whilst Brits at home have been focused on the impact of inbound immigration, security, workplace competitiveness and the stretch on housing and services, who has actually given UK expats around the globe a platform through which they can express their views openly, so that their voices can be truly heard? One place where all their opinions can converge.
Until now, nobody; and this is why the team at TheExpatSurvey.com, the world’s largest and most extensive ongoing research programme of all nationalities residing outside country of origin, has now launched The Big BreXpat Survey , so that UK expats can have their say.
Emma Wood, founding and project director, explains “we feel very strongly about giving UK expats a genuine opportunity to freely and openly express their views on this life-changing matter and for a very good reason. We were recently contacted by a UK Government department and asked if we would be interested in conducting a survey on British expats. Initially we were excited by this proposition, as we believed it would give UK citizens residing overseas the chance to really get their opinions across. However, when we saw the draft survey, we quickly came to realise that all it would be is a politically correct tick box exercise that fails to give expats a true voice”.
It has been a sore point amongst the British expat community for a number of years now that they lose the right to vote after 15 years of being overseas, when many of them have worked for decades paying tax into the UK tax system, often have assets in the UK and may well have plans to continue to invest in the country where they were born. Now those residing in the European Union face a potentially life-changing experience when those entitled to vote go to the polls on 23rd June 2016, but more than a million of them don’t have the right to participate.
“British people were once unreservedly encouraged to embrace all that the European Union stood for, to get out there and make the most of it and so many did. Now there is a cloud of uncertainty over the whole arrangement and the implications for some are huge. Imagine being in a position where you have no say in a process that may dramatically affect the rest of your life and impact significantly on your loved ones; or even if you do have a say the propaganda being pumped out via various forms of media has been engineered to drown out your views. That is not just” says Wood.
“Where our main research programme TheExpatSurvey.com and our quick polls are usually sponsored by corporate partners who are trying to best understand expatriates, to tailor their products and services appropriately, this survey is on us. It’s running at our expense, because we can no longer ignore the strength of feeling that is being communicated to us via unsolicited emails, which clearly indicates the sheer level of frustration they are experiencing. It’s been a long-fought fight for the ‘Votes for Life’ bill to be passed into law and there has been an enormous amount of campaigning for this to be done ahead of the IN / OUT vote, but it hasn’t happened yet. In the words of many expats ‘it’s a stitch up’ and so we want to give them a voice. Our findings will be reported straight back to the leaders of each political party, The Electoral Commission and the media, so we urge as many as possible to get involved”.
The Big BreXpat Survey wants to hear from UK expats living outside the EU, as well as within it. All those that participate benefit from anonymity. The research system does not collect names, addresses, phone numbers etc., only the views of expatriates, unless of course they want to continue a direct dialogue with our team, or to join the project’s international focus group, in which case they can leave their email only.
The Big BreXpat Survey is hosted at TheExpatSurvey.com, where expatriates can also find The Expat Helpdesk. A variety of companies are there to field enquiries from expatriates who may be concerned about the implications of a Brexit, such as International Family Law Group for advice on how family units may be affected, as well as Moore Stephens, Blevins Franks and Churchill & Partners on tax, pensions and investments, subject to where you are residing in the world.
Please direct any enquiries relating to this press release to:
Mark Edwards – Media & PR Director
Max Media International
1 Cobden Court
Wimpole Close, Bromley
Kent, United Kingdom
Telephone: +44 (0)20 8464 8787