Restaurateur Mikhail Zelman: “Brexit is a good example of real democracy”

— Are you currently in London? What is the mood on the streets?

— Yes, I’m in London. In the morning everyone got up, went to work. There is no such… a special no reaction. For me it is a very good example of how it should be. People held a referendum, expressed his opinion, but when in the morning woke up — no one was killed, nothing broken, all is quiet…

— Your friends-the British were configured for or against secession?

— All of my friends, including those around me and those who I have in my feed in Facebook, all voted to stay. But, let’s say, taxi drivers with whom I love to talk, and people who live outside London, friends of my friends, my friends — they voted for secession.

— They justified their position or decided emotionally?

— You know, England is an island which can afford to consider themselves European or not considered. The issue of Brexit — in itself a very English, very emotional. No particular argument with any one nor on the other hand I have not heard. Can’t say that I listened to all the debates, but those that heard, was very emotional. Populism was doing and the other party. On the freedom of movement within the EU, guarantees some of the rights, freedoms, and some things that apply to all people, Brexit will not affect. And emotionally speculative things about great Britain, about “come in large numbers here” — of course they were. While it is clear that these migrants that annoy some of the locals, they are still not going anywhere, still remain. I don’t think that will happen something really serious with the economy, with workers… I work people from the European Union, I don’t think they will complicated by any processes. There are no illegal migrants, and workers from other countries England is interested as they are interested. Most importantly, this story must show the world what real democracy is and how the critical questions can be solved peacefully.

— Now, for example, the pound has fallen — that means something for your restaurant business?

— If the pound fell, and I got the lobster imported from Canada of course, will affect. For me it would be more expensive import cost. But if you have more tourists, because the pound has fallen, it may all compensate, I still earn more. But I would advise the newspaper not to speculate on this. It’s much less important than the possibility of holding free elections, the will.

In General, weak or strong pound is very important to me. But in my memory the dollar was very strong and very weak — and it was not associated with Brexit. As a restaurateur, I don’t know how here is a direct link — what happened in the morning that the pound has suddenly weakened? Maybe tomorrow he’ll grow stronger? This is a very speculative story.

I’ve just driven from land, England itself is a lot of luck. I’m in London for nine years of doing business, and what I see now is speculation. I don’t think all the problems that exist in the economy of England resolved “different” or “brexton”. I do not think that these things are somehow directly correlated. For speculators, which are famous in England, especially for currency speculators, comes, of course, an interesting time. There will be many emotional decisions — in both plus and minus.

— As for cash savings — what currency do you gravitate to? Have changed your preferences?

— This is a very good question. When beginning to crackle Greece, I immediately transferred all their savings, which, I stress, very little, unfortunately, in dollars and pounds. I live and do business in dollars and pounds, and in this respect I had nothing to lose. The only one who is against this background really sank, whose economy has weakened, is the Euro. Euros on my savings no, I’m not upset.

— In Russia a huge amount of interest to Brexit — what is, in your opinion, is connected?

We provincials in some sense — watching, over there in England, in America… it is Better to consider it as examples of what we should move. Law, the will of the individual citizen may be even more important than borders.

It’s interesting, one of my friend said: how to relate to the fact that the capital of Europe came from Europe? Because London looked like a European capital. But this is also speculation… Switzerland, for example, is not in the EU, and nothing. The process of unification is not necessarily when something called “United Europe”. And out of England does not mean that stop the processes of global enterprises.