Britain's five main business organizations joined forces Monday to send a letter to Brexit Secretary David Davis, calling on the government to broker an urgent Brexit transition deal.
The letter, from the Confederation of British Industry (CBI), the Institute of Directors (IOD), British Chambers of Commerce, Federation of Small Businesses and the manufacturer's group, the EEF, contains a warning that jobs and investment will be at risk unless there is certainty about future arrangements, according to Sky News and the Guardian newspaper.
The five lobby groups, which represent millions of British workers, say a transition period agreement is needed as soon as possible, as companies prepare to make serious decisions at the start of 2018 which will have consequences for jobs and investment in Britain.
The Institute of Directors (IoD) confirmed to Xinhua that the letter had been delivered Monday to Davis' office, but a spokeswoman said it was a private letter and would not be released.
Sky News said sources described a draft of the letter it had seen as the most forthright warning to date from the "big five" business organizations.
Their report says the strongly worded letter told Davis businesses in Britain need time to prepare for a new UK-EU economic partnership.
The Guardian newspaper reports Monday that the draft of the letter, which it had seen, says the five business lobby groups warn time was running out for the government to strike a transition deal before firms start to rein in spending plans as they finalize budgets for 2018 and prepare to implement contingency plans for Britain's departure from the European Union.