- Title: Can Britain's love of the traditional German Christmas market survive Brexit?
- Date: 18th November 2016
- Summary: PEOPLE DRINKING AT A BAR SIGNS ON THE BAR READING: 'BIER' (Beer in German)
- Embargoed: 3rd December 2016 14:05
- Keywords: Brexit UK EU European Union Germany Christmas Market Birmingham referendum business trade
- Location: BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND, UK
- City: BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND, UK
- Country: United Kingdom
- Topics: Government/Politics,International Trade
- Reuters ID: LVA00258Z22IV
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text:German Christmas markets are as much a tradition in Britain as they are in Bavaria, but as Birmingham's annual Christmas market opened for its 16th year on Thursday (November 17), traders said they were worried about its future.
Britain's second largest city is celebrating 50 years of partnership with Frankfurt, longer than the UK's membership in the European Union.
Birmingham's Christmas market sells traditional German goods and food and drink, including pretzels, schnitzels, mulled wine and wheat beer.
The man responsible for organising 140 stalls in the market said he was optimistic about a post-Brexit trading relationship.
"I think it will be more difficult after Brexit but it needs several years if it is there, and I think then we will have regulations between Germany or the EU and Great Britain that it is possible to work not too difficult," said Kurt Stroscher.
However, if the UK starts to demand visas or import permits for stall holders after leaving the EU, some vendors said they might decide not to go through the hassle.
"If Brexit comes like it starts, like the pound goes down and the UK like close a little bit, a lot of stall holders will say okay that's it. I mean my boss has already started thinking about to stop it here especially after the Brexit, so there are also other people thinking about that," said a stall holder, Tom Bunte.
"The Germans feel bad for the English people. It's not them but we feel bad. It's the same like we feel bad for the Americans with er… Donald Trump."," said another stall holder, Monica Vandermeer.
Despite the June referendum, British retail sales rose at their fastest annual rate in more than 14 years in October.
- Copyright Holder: REUTERS