Potential French boycott threatens business in UK

Britain could lose billions of pounds' worth of business in France because of a possible consumer boycott prompted by the war on Iraq, according to new research.

The poll, commissioned by Weber Shandwick's research arm KRC Research, found that around 11 per cent of French consumers plan to boycott British products as a result of UK participation in the Iraq war. Only one per cent of French consumers say they are more likely to buy British goods as a result.

In Germany - where anti-British sentiment has also risen - the response was more balanced. Around ten per cent of German consumers said they were less likely to buy British, but seven per cent said they were more likely to do so.

The survey, conducted between 11 and 13 April, also suggests some anti-war feeling among British consumers.

Eleven per cent said they are less likely to buy American products as a result of the war, compared to just four per cent who said they were more likely to do so.

Following the release of the survey, Weber Shandwick joint chief executive UK David Brain said companies should be wary of wrapping themselves in the national flag.

This latest research comes weeks after a survey by Fleishman-Hillard found that US consumers are more likely to buy British as a result of the war (PRWeek, 4 April).

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Register
Already registered?
Sign in