brexit one

Brexit, I



goods skeptical on our own
pint overseas at the end of the day
burden workforce down a pint
benefit convince headquarters
recruit strategy amusement park
hire matter (2) jurisdiction
intern asset (2) demonstrate
charge real time virtual reality
remote field (2) entertainment
arcade red tape manipulate
afford keen (2) referendum
vote tough (2) lead the charge
budget impinge complicated
secure appreciate Third World
poll expand run their lives
debate convince entrepreneur






Rugby. A town of seventy-thousand in the West-Midlands. A shop selling Polish goods is open on the high street.

Like other cities and towns across Britain, Rugby is home to many immigrants from other EU member states.

At the market, people are skeptical of Europe.

Market Seller: “I think we don’t need the Europeans. We don’t need them. We’re strong enough to stand on our own. We are.”

Person on the Street: “We want to be on our own, and that’s how it should be. And also, at the end of the day, nothing is made in this country anymore. Everything’s imported from overseas. I think that should be brought back as well.”

The regulars at the Ball Pub have already downed a few pints. They also have nothing good to say about the EU.

Pub Customer: “With all the Lithuanians, the Romanians . . . everyone else coming over here. You know what I mean? We could be another Third World country.

We have a population of immigrants.

That’s why I don’t want to be in Europe. All I want is to come out of it.”

Only the young people of Rugby are keen to remain in the EU.

Young Woman: “I think it’s good to stay in because it’s like a big family. If we leave, we’ve not got a family anymore.”

But now, software company Holovis, which has its headquarters a few kilometers out of town, is trying to convince people of the benefits of EU membership.

Andrew Brown is strategy director at Holovis. The firm is growing, so he wants to be able to recruit IT foreign specialists without much red tape.

Six people from other EU countries currently work here.

Andrew Brown, Holovis Strategy Director: “We find obviously EU recruitment easiest of all because we know the people have the right to work in the UK from day one.

It’s more complicated working with other jurisdictions because we have to go through the work-visa process.”

Yohan, from Mumbai, India, is interning at Holovis. The firm plans to hire him once he’s graduated from the University of Nottingham, though getting the work-visa will be tough.

Here Yohan demonstrates virtual reality applications for cars.

Andrew Brown, Holovis Strategy Director: “Here we’re have a virtual reality project that we’re doing with Jaguar Land Rover. So two people in geographically remote locations can look at the data assets in real time, and manipulate them.”

Holovis’s core business is creating software for the automotive industry. But the company also works in the entertainment field, and has created programs for amusement parks and arcades.

So it appreciates being part of the EU.

Andrew Brown: “We like an open market. We like the free movement of labor. We like the ability to expand in a way where we are not burdened by regulation, which we are currently not too burdened by.”

Most British business people feel the same way.

But will they be leading the charge in the Brexit debate? Britons are set to vote on the matter in a referendum to be held by 2017 at the latest.

Andrew Brown: “What people think about a lot, certainly in our workforce, is whether their employment is secure; and whether they can afford to run their household budgets, and run their own lives.

And the EU doesn’t impinge on that in any particular way.

So I don’t think that people are quite as exercised at a personal level about this.

Recent polls show that nearly half of Britons favor a Brexit. So the nation’s entrepreneurs will need to convince people — and not just in the town of Rugby — of the benefits of staying in the common market.

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1. Everyone in the town of Rugby is a native, White Briton. True or false?

2. Were the people at the market and pub enthusiastic about the European Union? Why are they anti-EU?

3. Does everyone in Rugby share their views? What kind of residents are pro-EU?

4. Holovis is a high-tech company. Is this correct or incorrect? What does it do?

5. Does Andrew Brown, the Holovis Strategy Director want the UK to remain in the EU or leave it? What benefits or advantages does he mention?

6. The referendum on British membership in the EU will be a close vote. Yes or no?


A. I think the UK should remain in the European Union. Do you agree? Do countries (in EU) want Britain to remain or leave?

B. Is your country part of the EU? If it is, do you and your friends want it to remain or exit the EU?

C. If your country is not an EU member, would people like to join it? Is your country part of a larger union or trade zone?

D. Other countries in the EU feel the same way as some Britons about leaving. What do you think?

E. Is it better or worse to be part of a larger trading block or zone?

F. What will happen in the future?

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