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Half of Scots accountants want no time limit on Brexit 

Research by the Institute of Chartered Accountants also found 9% want a clean break.

Brexit: Britain's decision to leave the EU has created a political headache for Theresa May and Nicola Sturgeon.
Brexit: Britain's decision to leave the EU has created a political headache for Theresa May and Nicola Sturgeon. PA

Almost half of accountants want any post-Brexit transition period to last "as long as it takes" for the UK and the European Union to negotiate a lasting relationship, a new survey has found. 

Research by the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland (Icas) revealed 47% of chartered accountants surveyed did not want any time restrictions placed on transition, while 9% favoured a "clean break" with no transition. 

Just under a third, 29%, backed the Prime Minister's proposal of up to two years and 13% said supported a transition period of three to five years. 

A majority of respondents to the latest ICAS Brexit Tracker poll said they would be happy for the UK to remain a member of the either the single market (83%), customs union (83%) and to retain freedom of movement (82%) as part of a transition deal. 

Meanwhile, more than half (57%) believed the EU regulations should continue to apply to UK businesses during transition.

And just under half (49%) said they would back the continued jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice during that time. 

Asked to rate the impact of Brexit so far on a sliding scale of very positive (+50) to very negative (-50) the latest poll found no change from the summer survey at an average score of -9. 

But assessments of the future impact on the individual businesses and the UK economy once the UK leaves the EU were more downbeat, falling from from one point to -15 and two points to -18 respectively. 

The majority (58%) of the 370 chartered accountants who responded to the online survey, carried out in association with law firm Brodies LLP between September 5 and 29 are, based in Scotland. 

Bruce Cartwright, executive director of policy leadership at ICAS, said: "Our members recognise and respect the privacy of the current Brexit negotiations. 

"It might be fair to say that nothing is agreed until it is all agreed. 

"Nevertheless, the continuing public uncertainty is not helpful and is reflected in our members' views."

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