Richard Branson rips ‘terrible’ Brexit, Trump’s ‘dangerous’ policies – MarketWatch

Richard Branson rips ‘terrible’ Brexit, Trump’s ‘dangerous’ policies – MarketWatch

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Billionaire Richard Branson is no fan of Brexit or President Donald Trump’s administration, and sharply criticized both Wednesday during a CNBC interview.

The Virgin Group founder said the rise of protectionism in the U.S. and U.K is “so unhealthy” for the global economy.

“What happened with Brexit is a terrible, terrible mistake. . . . It may take years for it to recover.”


Richard Branson

“What happened with Brexit is a terrible, terrible mistake, both for Europe and for Great Britain, and will set Great Britain back. It may take years for it to recover,” he said. “If we do see a hard Brexit, that will be catastrophic for Britain and damaging for Europe too.”

But Branson said he was encouraged by the losses Prime Minister Theresa May’s Conservative Party suffered in recent parliamentary elections, and that voters may be having second thoughts as to the wisdom of Britain leaving the European Union. “Some sense is finally beginning to prevail,” he said, adding that he thought “the possibility of a hard Brexit has now gone away.”

Read: The U.K. election result could mean a ‘softer’ Brexit

Also see: Brexit one year later: 5 ways the U.K. could now leave the EU

Branson said young people will suffer the most from Brexit, and remained optimistic that there will eventually be a second referendum to overturn the “leave” vote.

As for Trump, Branson called policies like the travel ban targeting six predominantly Muslim countries “dangerous.”

“What is happening in America at the moment is extremely unhealthy and dangerous,” he said. “I’m hopeful things will reverse in America and decency will come back.”

Branson, who owns 10% of Virgin Australia

VAH, +3.03%

 , spoke while on the airline’s maiden flight between Melbourne and Hong Kong.

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