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How will Brexit Affect Businesses? Trade

At the GBCC, we want to help businesses be as informed as possible about what Brexit could mean for them so that they are in the best possible place to respond and adapt quickly as the final outcome becomes clear.

Below you will find deal and no-deal scenario based advice based on the latest information at the time of publication. For the latest updates on Brexit negotiations and the Brexit timeline click here.


Importing & Exporting Goods and Services in a No-Deal Scenario

Exporting Goods to the EU: No Deal Brexit Scenario Training Video

Peter Murphy, Director of Allenco Worldwide explaining the fundamentals of a no-deal Brexit scenario for exporting goods to the EU and what businesses can do to prepare.

Darren Mather, Founder & Director of Axiski sharing how his business has approached preparing for Brexit on exporting goods to the EU.

Importing Goods From the EU: No Deal Brexit Scenario Training Video

Peter Murphy, Director of Allenco Worldwide explaining the fundamentals of a no-deal Brexit scenario for importing goods to the EU and what businesses can do to prepare.

Nigel Waldron, Managing Director, Power Minerals Ltd sharing how his company have adapted their import strategy as a result of Brexit.

For more information on the training available via the GBCC on importing and exporting goods (including Incoterms and Customs Declarations) click here.

Nations with EU Trade Deals: No Deal Brexit Scenario Training Video

This video features Peter Wilding, Consultant, FBC Manby Bowdler explaining what would change for businesses in a no-deal Brexit scenario on trading with countries that the EU has a trade deal with.

Exporting Services to the EU: No Deal Brexit Scenario Training Video

Peter Wilding, Consultant, FBC Manby Bowdler and Hayley Hill, Manager, VAT services explaining the implications of a no-deal Brexit scenario for delivering services in the EU and what businesses can do to prepare.

Nik Hardy, Managing Director of Hardy Signs and Mark Runiewicz, Principal Consultuant, SC Advisors sharing how their organisations are approaching preparing for Brexit or supporting local businesses.

Importing Services From the EU: No Deal Brexit Scenario Training Video

Peter Wilding, Consultant, FBC Manby Bowdler and Hayley Hill, Manager, VAT services explaining the implications of a no-deal Brexit scenario for importing services from the EU and what businesses can do to prepare.


Deal or No-Deal Q&A

Buying Goods & Services

What do we know so far?

As the UK is currently a member of the European Union, this means that UK businesses are able to import goods from EU Member states without being subject to import duty.

If the UK Government reaches a Withdrawal Agreement with the European Union then the status quo is expected to continue until the end of the transition/implementation period on the 31st December 2020.

Once the UK leaves the European Union, the level of import duty will depend upon the future trading relationship agreed between the UK Government and the EU which is still subject to negotiation.

The Political Declaration released by the UK and EU in November 2018 sets out the frame work for the future relationship between the EU and the UK. It proposes zero tariffs, no fees, charges or quantitative restriction s across all goods sectors. However, this remains subject to negotiation.

In the event of a “No Deal” Brexit

In this scenario, from thedate that the UK leaves the EU, the UK would revert to World Trade Organisation Rules (WTO) which means that UK businesses would have to apply the same customs procedures to imports from the EU, that are currently used when importing goods from countries with which the EU has no trade deals/preferential market access. This would result in the UK and the EU trading on non-preferential terms. This means that ‘Most Favoured Nation’ tariffs would apply to imports from the EU and an import declaration wouldbe required for goods entering the UK from the EU.

However, the UK Government has said they will introduce a temporary tariff regime in the event of a no deal scenario to minimise costs to businesses. The temporary tariff would apply for up to 12 months while a full consultation is undertaken. This temporary tariff would result in 87% of total imports to the UK being eligible for tariff free access.

Click here for more information on trading with the EU if there is no Brexit Deal from the UK Government.

Click here for more information on the temporary tariff regime.  

What do we know so far?

The UK is currently a member of the European Union which means that goods imported from other EU countries are not subject to VAT. However, UK businesses who currently import goods from outside the EU generally have to pay import VAT (as well as VAT on import duty). If the UK leaves the EU VAT area then import VAT may have to be paid by UK firms who import from the EU. This is still subject to negotiations.

If the UK reaches a Withdrawal Agreement with the European Union then it is expected that the status quo will continue to apply until the end of the transition/implementation period on the 31st December 2020.  

In the event of a “No Deal” Brexit

The UK Government has confirmed that they will continue to use a VAT system after the UK leaves the EU. If the UK is unable to reach a deal with the EU, then the current rules for importing from outside the EU will apply to imports from the EU as well.

In this scenario, the UK Government has confirmed that they will introduce postponed accounting for imports on goods brought into the UK.  This means that UK VAT registered businesses would not have to pay import VAT as soon as their imported goods arrive in the UK. They would instead, account for their import VAT on their VAT return. This has been introduced to mitigate the impact on UK businesses cash-flow and will also apply to non-EU countries as well.  

Click here to find out more information on VAT for businesses if there’s no Brexit deal from the UK Government.

Click here for guidance on accounting for import VAT if the UK leaves the EU without a deal.

What do we know so far?

As the UK is a member of the European Union, UK businesses currently have the freedom to purchase services from companies based in other European Union member states. This is set out in the Services Directive which requires Member States to abolish discriminatory and restrictive requirements.  If the UK and the EU reach a withdrawal agreement, it is expected that a transition/implementation period will run until the 31st December 2020 during which little will change.

We do not currently know what barriers UK businesses will face after the implementation period ends as this is still subject to negotiation between the UK and the EU. However, as the UK Government is committed to leaving the single market, it is highly likely that UK businesses will no longer have the same level of access. This will depend upon the final agreement and the extent to which the UK chooses to diverge from EU regulation. The more the UK diverges from EU regulation, the more likely it is that your business may be restricted or face barriers when trying to buy services from companies based in the EU.  

The political declaration released in November 2018 setting out the frame work for the future relationship between the EU and the UK proposes:

  • Ambitious, comprehensive and balanced arrangements on trade in services delivering a level of liberalisation in trade in services well beyond the Parties’ WTO commitments, and in line with Article V of the General Agreement on Trade in Services, with substantial sectoral coverage, covering all modes of supply and providing for the absence of substantially all discrimination in the covered sectors, with exceptions and limitations as appropriate.
  • Provisions on market access and national treatment under host state rules, ensuring that the Parties' services providers are treated in a non-discriminatory manner, including with regard to establishment.
  • While preserving regulatory autonomy, provisions to promote regulatory approaches that are transparent, efficient, compatible to the extent possible, and which promote avoidance of unnecessary regulatory requirements.

Specifically on financial services, the outline political declaration on the future relationship between the UK and the EU states:

  • Commitments to preserving financial stability, market integrity, investor protection and fair competition, while respecting the Parties’ regulatory and decision-making autonomy, and their ability to take equivalence decisions in their own interest. This is without prejudice to the Parties' ability to adopt or maintain any measure where necessary for prudential reasons.
  • Commencement of equivalence assessments by both Parties as soon as possible after the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the Union, endeavouring to conclude these assessments before the end of June 2020.

However, the details of the UK’s future relationship with the EU remain subject to negotitations.

Click here to find out more about the UK Government negotiating position regarding trade in services as set out in ‘the future relationship between the United Kingdom and the European Union’ White Paper .   

 In the event of a “No Deal” Brexit

In this scenario, the UK and the EU would have to fall back on World Trade Organisation rules. This means that EU businesses would no longer have any preferential access to the UK market and would have the same level of access as other third countries that do not have a free trade agreement with the UK which covers service sectors. Regulators will be able to impose more restrictive requirements on EEA service providers should they wish to do so. Click here for more information

In the event of a ‘no deal’ Brexit, EEA firms would no longer be able to passport into the UK and would need to seek authorisation from UK regulators to continue to be able to access the UK market. To minimise any potential disruption, the UK Government has announced that they will introduce a temporary permissions regime. This will enable EEA firms currently passporting into the UK to continue to operate in the UK for up to three years after exit. During this period, EEA firms will be required to obtain any necessary authorisation or recognition in the UK. Click here for further information.    

The UK Government has set out a number of technical notices to help businesses prepare for a no deal scenario which you can access here.

Click here for guidance from the UK Government on providing services including those of a qualified professional if there’s no Brexit deal. 

Click here for guidance from the UK Government on banking, insurance and other financial services if there’s no Brexit deal.

Click here for guidance from the UK Government  on accounting and audit if there’s no Brexit deal.

Click here for guidance from the UK Government on what telecoms businesses should do if there’s no Brexit deal.

 

What do we know so far?

If the withdrawal agreement is ratified by both the UK and the EU, it is expected that a transition/implementation period will run until the 31st December 2020 during which little will change.

Rules of Origin are criteria used to determine the national source of a product. There are two types: 1) Preferential Rules of Origin (where countries have a trade agreement in place, Preferential Rules of Origin are used to determine whether goods are demonstrably produced in the country in question and, therefore, able to qualify for the relevant duty relief/avoidance of other restrictions).

2) Non-Preferential Rules of Origin (where a Certificate of Origin provides a legal statement of where the goods were manufactured, as may be requested by certain customers or customs authorities, but does not provide access to any preferential arrangements).

The UK is currently a member of the EU Customs Union and, as a result, businesses for whom Rules of Origin apply operate under an EU Rules of Origin system (i.e. a system for proving that the primary source of their goods is the EU). EU businesses do not currently need to provide Certificates of Origin when trading with the UK.

The Government has stated that the UK will be leaving the EU Customs Union and, therefore, the remit of EU Rules of Origin. What form UK Rules of Origin will take and what documentation will be required on EU companies selling goods to the UK have yet to be confirmed.

The UK Government has said that they would like to see no routine requirements for rules of origin on any UK-EU trade in goods. They have proposed an arrangement that would allow a cumulation of value added with current Free Trade Agreement Partners in order to preserve existing supply chains.   This would mean that EU content would count as local content in UK exports and vice versa. This would make it easier for UK businesses to reach the value- added threshold required to re-export to the EU. 

However, this is still subject to negotiation and will be determined by the future trading arrangements agreed between the EU and the UK.  If the UK Government reaches a free trade agreement with the EU, then UK businesses selling goods into the EU may need to prove that their goods are from the UK in order to qualify for preferential treatment (lower or nil customs duty). 

In the event of a “No Deal” Brexit

In the event of a no deal Brexit event, the UK will be outside of the Customs Union and without a preferential trading arrangement in place. As the UK would be trading with the EU on WTO terms, it is highly unlikely that formal proof of origin would be required.  The UK Government is currently in the process of transitioning existing EU trade agreements which the UK participates in as a member of the EU. Under these existing arrangements, the UK will continue to accept the same types of proof of origin from trading partners.

Click here for more information on rules of origin requirements in a no deal scenario

What do we know so far?

If the UK reaches a Withdrawal Agreement with the European Union then there will be no changes to the documentation you need to provide in order to import goods or services in the UK until the end of the transition/implementation period on the 31st December 2020.

It is not yet clear as to what documents you will need to provide after the end of the implementation period. This is still subject to negotiation between the UK and the EU and will only become clear once the future trading relationship has been agreed.

In the event of a “No Deal” Brexit

In the event of a no deal Brexit, the UK will no longer be a member of the Customs Union. This means that there will no longer be the free circulation of goods between the UK and the EU. UK businesses will need to be aware of the following before importing goods from the EU:

  • Businesses will need an Economic Operator Registration and Identification (EORI) number to import goods from the EU.
  • They will need to submit an import declaration to HMRC using their software, or get a customs broker, freight forwarder or logistics provider to do this for them. This is usually submitted through a Single Administrative Document (also known as C88 form).
  • Businesses may also require an import license or provide supporting documentation to import certain types of goods from the UK.
  • Businesses will need a commercial invoice and a copy of the transport documentation for customs clearance.
  • Goods exceeding £6,500 will also require a valuation statement.

UK Businesses will also need to be aware of other supporting documentation such as certificates of origin.

The Government has recommended that businesses familiarise themselves with the current rules for importing goods from outside the EU in preparation.

Click here for more information from the UK Government on trading with the EU if there’s no Brexit deal

Click here for more information from the UK Government on importing from outside the EU.  

Click here for more information from the UK Government on International Trade Paperwork.

Contact the GBCC Documentations team for more information on customs declarations and international trade documentation here.

What do we know so far?

Through its membership of the European Union, the UK currently has access to trade agreements with over 50 regions and nations. The UK Government has stated that they would like to maintain these preferential trading arrangements to provide stability for businesses as the UK exits the EU. The Government has said that during the implementation period (ending 31st December 2020), they would arrange for these international trade agreements to continue with partner countries. In this scenario, you would most likely be able to continue buying goods and services on the same terms as now.  After the implementation period ends, the UK would be free to pursue an independent trade policy and renegotiate these agreements, should it wish to do so.

In the event of a “No Deal” Brexit

In this scenario, the UK would immediately lose access to these preferential trading arrangements and would fall back on to World Trade Organisation Terms. This means that, in the absence of a new trade deal, it is most likely that you would be subject to the same tariffs and barriers you currently face when purchasing goods and services from other non-EU nations that do not have a trade deal with the EU. The Government is working to replicate these preferential trading arrangements (as closely as possible) into bilateral UK-third country agreements from the day the UK exits. However, this is not guaranteed and is subject to negotiations between the UK and third countries that have a trade agreement with the EU.  

Click here for a list of all trade and mutual recognition continuity agreements the UK has agreed with non-EU countries.

Click here for more information from the UK Government on what would happen to existing free trade agreements in the event of a no-deal Brexit.

What do we know so far?

UK businesses can currently move goods freely throughout the EU and are not required to make any customs or export declarations, nor are they subject to import duty. If the UK reaches an agreement with the EU, then this will continue to apply until the end of the implementation period (31st December 2020). If the “backstop” is activated then there will be no changes to UK customs procedure for the duration it remains in place.

It is not clear how customs procedures will change at the end of the implementation period as this is still subject to negotiation between the UK and the EU. The UK Government has proposed implementing a free trade area for goods which it claims would avoid the need for customs and regulatory checks at the border, including customs declarations, routine requirements for rules of origin and entry and exit summit declarations. The products would only be checked once in either the UK or the EU market before being sold in both markets.  The EU & UK’s draft Political Declaration on the future relationship (released November 2018) also outlines the intention to ensure ‘deep regulatory and customs cooperation’.

In the event of a “No Deal” Brexit

In the event of a no deal Brexit, UK businesses would no longer be able to circulate goods freely throughout the EU. This means that UK businesses would be required to apply the same customs and excise rules to goods moving between the UK and the EU, as they would between goods moving from the UK to non-EU countries. This will involve customs declarations for goods entering and leaving the UK, as well as safety and security declarations by the carrier. The EU would also require customs declarations on goods coming from, or going to the UK, as well as requiring safety and security declarations.

The government has announced that they will introduce simplified importing procedures in a ‘no deal’ scenario to give businesses (who import from the EU) time to adjust. The new process is referred to as Transitional Simplified Procedures (TSP) and will run for an initial period of one year. Under the new system, importers will not be required to make a full customs declaration at the border and can defer paying any duty until the month after import. In order to register for TSP, businesses are required to have an Economic Operator Registration Number (EORI) number. It is important that businesses register for a UK EORI number to continue trading with the EU in a no deal scenario. Click here for more information.

The government has established a UK Trade Tariff to replace the EU Common Customs Tariff for imports to the UK. The UK Trade Tariff will be used by importers to determine the amount of import duty applicable to the goods they are importing. To determine the level of duty, importers will require knowledge of the item including country of origin, what it is made of and the purpose for which it is used. Click here for further information from the UK Government on the UK Trade Tariff.

There would also be changes in regards to the movement of excise goods, with the Excise Movement Control System (ECMS) no longer being used to control suspended movements between the UK and the EU. However, it will continue to be used for moving excise goods within the UK. Click here for more information.

Click for more information from the UK Government on declaring your goods at customs if the UK leaves the EU without a deal.


Selling Goods & Services

What do we know so far?

As the UK is currently a member of the European Union, this means that EU businesses are able to import goods from the UK without being subject to import duty. If the UK Parliament ratifies the Withdrawal Agreement, then this will continue to apply until the end of the implementation period (31st December 2020).

Once the UK leaves the European Union, the level of import duty will depend upon the future trading relationship agreed between the UK Government and the EU which is still subject to negotiation.

The political declaration (released November 2018) setting out the frame work for the future relationship between the EU and the UK proposes zero tariffs, no fees, charges or quantitative restriction s across all goods sectors.

In the event of a “No Deal” Brexit

In this scenario, from the date that the UK leaves the EU, the UK would revert to World Trade Organisation Rules (WTO). This would result in the UK and the EU trading on non-preferential terms. From this point onwards, the EU Common Customs Tariff would apply to goods imported from the UK which means that your EU customers would have to pay tariffs.

Click here for more information from the UK Government on trading with the EU if there is no Brexit Deal.

What do we know so far?

UK businesses currently have to register for VAT in other EU member states if they are selling to a customer who is not registered for VAT in that country and the UK business is responsible for delivery. Under the current rules goods bought within the EU supply chain arrangements known as ‘triangulations’ are zero rated and you do not need to register in the final destination EU country.

If the UK reaches a Withdrawal Agreement with the EU, then this will continue to apply until the end of the implementation period (31st December 2020).  What will happen after that is still subject to negotiations.

In the event of a “No Deal” Brexit

In this scenario, UK businesses selling their own goods in an EU member state will continue to be required to register for VAT in the EU member state where sales are made. With respect to goods bought under the EU triangulation system, this would most likely end in the system being withdrawn and the UK business would have to register in the final destination EU country. For UK businesses selling services into the EU, the current place of supply rules will continue to apply on the same basis as they do now.

Click here to find out more information from the UK Government on VAT for businesses if there is no Brexit deal.

As the UK is a member of the European Union, UK businesses currently have the freedom to sell services to companies based in other European Union member states. This is set out in the Services Directive which requires Member States to abolish discriminatory and restrictive requirements. If the UK and the EU reach a Withdrawal Agreement, then the status quo will continue until the end of the implementation period in 2020.

We do not currently know what barriers UK businesses will face after the implementation period ends as this is still subject to negotiation between the UK and the EU. However, as the UK Government is committed to leaving the single market, it is highly likely that UK businesses will no longer have the same level of access. This will entirely depend upon the final agreement and the extent to which the UK chooses to diverge from EU regulation. The more the UK diverges from EU regulation, the more likely it is that your business may be restricted or face barriers when trying to sell to companies based in the EU. 

The political declaration setting out the frame work for the future relationship between the EU and the UK proposes:

  • Ambitious, comprehensive and balanced arrangements on trade in services delivering a level of liberalisation in trade in services well beyond the Parties’ WTO commitments, and in line with Article V of the General Agreement on Trade in Services, with substantial sectoral coverage, covering all modes of supply and providing for the absence of substantially all discrimination in the covered sectors, with exceptions and limitations as appropriate.
  • Provisions on market access and national treatment under host state rules, ensuring that the Parties' services providers are treated in a non-discriminatory manner, including with regard to establishment. While preserving regulatory autonomy, provisions to promote regulatory approaches that are transparent, efficient, compatible to the extent possible, and which promote avoidance of unnecessary regulatory requirements.

Specifically on financial services, the outline political declaration on the future relationship between the UK and the EU states:

  • Commitments to preserving financial stability, market integrity, investor protection and fair competition, while respecting the Parties’ regulatory and decision-making autonomy, and their ability to take equivalence decisions in their own interest. This is without prejudice to the Parties' ability to adopt or maintain any measure where necessary for prudential reasons.
  • Commencement of equivalence assessments by both Parties as soon as possible after the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the Union, endeavouring to conclude these assessments before the end of June 2020.

Click here to read the political declaration setting out the framework for the future relationship between the European Union and the United Kingdom. 

Click here to find out more about the UK Government negotiating position regarding trade in services as set out in ‘the future relationship between the United Kingdom and the European Union’ White Paper.  

 In the event of a “No Deal” Brexit

In this scenario, the UK and the EU would have to fall back on World Trade Organisation rules. This means that UK businesses would no longer have any preferential access to the EU market and would have the same level of access as other countries that do not have a free trade agreement with the EU which covers services. Therefore, your business may be unable to continue selling services to companies based in the EU. This will ultimately depend upon the specific commitments for services trade that the EU and its Member States apply to trading partners, in their schedule of commitments (as a member of the WTO) under the General Agreement on Trade in Services.

It is important to be aware that in the event of a ‘no deal’, UK financial services firms currently passporting into the EEA will lose their rights to passport. This could have a detrimental impact on UK service firms operating in the EEA and their customers’ ability to continue accessing their services.  Many UK financial service firms who currently passport into the EU are establishing a EEA subsidiary so they can continue to operate after exit.

The UK Government has set out a number of technical notices to help businesses prepare for a no deal scenario which you can access here.

Click here for guidance on providing services including those of a qualified professional if there’s no Brexit deal. 

Click here for guidance on banking, insurance and other financial services if there’s no Brexit deal.

Click here for guidance on accounting and audit if there’s no Brexit deal.

Click here for guidance on what telecoms businesses should do if there’s no Brexit deal.

What do we know so far?

If the UK Parliament ratifies the withdrawal agreement with the European Union, then there will be no changes to the documentation you need to provide in order to export goods or services in the EU until the end of the implementation period (31st December 2020).

It is not yet clear as to what documents you will need to provide when exporting goods to the EU after the end of the implementation period. This is still subject to negotiation between the UK and the EU and will only become clear once the future trading relationship has been agreed.

In the event of a “No Deal” Brexit

In the event of a no deal Brexit, the UK will no longer be a member of the Customs Union. This means that there will no longer be the free circulation of goods between the UK and the EU. UK businesses will need to be aware of the following before exporting goods to the EU:

  • Businesses will need an Economic Operator Registration and Identification (EORI) number to export goods to the EU.
  • Submit an export declaration to HMRC (You can submit this online or by using HMRC software. You may wish to engage a customs broker, freight forwarder or logistics provider to do this for you).
  • Businesses may also require an export license or provide supporting documentation to export certain types of goods from the UK.
  • Commercial Invoice.

UK Businesses will also need to be aware of other supporting documentation such as certificates of origin and an ATA Carnet (taking goods on a temporary basis) which may be required.

Click here for more information from the UK Government on trading with the EU if there’s no Brexit deal

Click here for more information from the UK Government on export documentation.

Contact the GBCC Documentations team for more information on customs declarations and international trade documentation here.

What do we know so far?

Through its membership of the European Union, the UK currently has access to trade agreements with over 50 regions and countries. The UK Government has stated that they would like to maintain these preferential trading arrangements to provide stability for businesses as the UK exits the EU. The Government has said that, if a Withdrawal Agreement is reached, during the implementation period, they would arrange for these international trade agreements to continue with partner countries. In this scenario, you would most likely be able to continue selling goods and services on the same terms as now.  After the implementation period ends (expected: 31st December 2020), the UK would be free to pursue an independent trade policy and renegotiate these agreements, should it wish to do so.

In the event of a “No Deal” Brexit

In this scenario, the UK would immediately lose access to these preferential trading arrangements and would fall back on to World Trade Organisation Terms. This means that, in the absence of a new trade deal, it is most likely that you would be subject to the same tariffs and barriers you currently face when selling goods and services to other non-EU nations that do not have a trade deal with the EU. The Government is working to replicate these preferential trading arrangements (as closely as possible) into bilateral UK-third country agreements from the day the UK exits. However, this is not guaranteed and is subject to negotiations between the UK and third countries that have a trade agreement with the EU. 

Click here for a list of all trade and mutual recognition continuity agreements the UK has agreed with non-EU countries.  

Click  for more information from the UK Government on Free Trade Agreements in the event of a no-deal Brexit

What do we know so far?

UK businesses can currently move goods freely throughout the EU and are not required to make any customs or export declarations, nor are they subject to import duty. If the UK ratifies an agreement with the EU, then this will continue to apply until the end of the implementation period. If the backstop is activated then there will be no changes to customs procedure for the duration it remains in place.

It is not clear how customs procedures will change at the end of the implementation period as this is still subject to negotiation between the UK and the EU. The UK Government has proposed implementing a free trade area for goods which it claims would avoid the need for customs and regulatory checks at the border, including customs declarations, routine requirements for rules of origin and entry and exit summit declarations. The products would only be checked once in either the UK or the EU market before being sold in both markets.

In the event of a “No Deal” Brexit

In the event of a no deal Brexit, UK businesses would no longer be able to circulate goods freely throughout the EU. This means that UK businesses would be required to apply the same customs and excise rules to goods moving between the UK and the EU, as they would between goods moving from the UK to non-EU countries. This would require customs declarations for goods entering and leaving the UK, as well as safety and security declarations by the carrier. The EU would also require customs declarations on goods coming from, or going to the UK, as well as requiring safety and security declarations.

There would also be changes in regards to the movement of excise goods, with the Excise Movement Control System (ECMS) no longer being used to control suspended movements between the UK and the EU. However, it will continue to be used for moving excise goods within the UK. Click here for more information.

Click here for more information from the UK Government on declaring your goods at customs if the UK leaves the EU without a deal.

What do we know so far?

If the UK Government reaches a Withdrawal Agreement with the European Union, then UK businesses will be able to continue using their .EU domain names until the end of the implementation period (expected: 31st December 2020). After the implementation period ends, the EU has confirmed that organisations (established in the UK but not the EU) will technically no longer be eligible to register for, or renew .EU domain names. The EU Commission has also confirmed that after the implementation period ends, the .EU registry will have the right to revoke the domain name from existing holders in the UK as they will no longer be eligible.

In the event of a “No Deal” Brexit

In this scenario, UK businesses will technically no longer be able to register or renew .EU domain names from the date that the UK leaves the EU. As mentioned above, the .EU registry will have the right to revoke the domain name from existing holders in the UK after the withdrawal date.

Click here for more information from the European Union on .EU domain names post-Brexit. 


Temporary Exports, Transactions & Transport

What do we know so far?

UK businesses that currently take goods into the EU on a temporary basis do not need permission unless they are controlled goods such as weapons. Provided that the EU and UK are able to agree a Withdrawal Deal, this will continue to apply until the end of the implementation period (31st December 2020). The UK Government has said that they would like to establish a new UK-EU culture and education accord that allows for the temporary movement of goods for major events.

In the event of a “No Deal” Brexit

In the event of a no deal Brexit, UK businesses will still be able to take goods into the EU on a temporary basis but they will most likely require an ATA carnet. An ATA Carnet is an international customs document which allows the temporary importation of goods into countries that are part of the ATA Carnet system, without having to pay unnecessary taxes or duties. This document covers goods that are leaving the UK and returning within a twelve month period.  It is important to note that each individual country will have its own rules about what goods you can bring in. 

Click here for more information on the GBCC Export Documentations team.

What do we know so far?

As a member of the European Union, UK businesses currently need to hold a Standard International Vehicle Operator License and a Community License for transporting goods across the EU. A Community License allows UK haulage companies unlimited international journeys for ‘hire and reward’ (carrying other people’s goods in return for payment) for operations in the EU. This includes cross trade (between EU countries) and transit across the EU.

UK companies also have access to the European Conference of Ministers of Transport (ECMT) permit scheme that provides a limited number of permits to the UK. These permits allow UK hauliers to carry goods through all of the countries in the EU.

It is also necessary that professional drivers hold a certificate of Professional Competence (CPC). These qualifications are currently recognised across the EU which allows drivers to operate without requiring any additional qualifications.

If the UK reaches a Withdrawal Agreement with the EU, then your business will be able to continue transporting goods across the EU until the end of the implementation period in 2020. After the end of the implementation period, the UK Government has said that it wishes to maintain and develop existing levels of transport connectivity with the EU. However, this is still subject to negotiation.

The political declaration setting out the framework for the future relationship between the UK and the EU proposes that the Parties should ensure comparable market access for freight and passenger road transport operators  

In the event of a “No Deal” Brexit

In this scenario, there is no guarantee that the EU would automatically recognise UK businesses that were issued Community License in the UK. This could result in UK hauliers losing their automatic access to EU markets. This would depend on whether individual EU countries recognise UK issued operators on the notion that they are based on the same standards as EU issued licenses. If they fail to recognise them then UK firms would still be able to use ECMT permits, although these are limited in number and would be subject to criteria. If this were to happen, the Government has said that it would attempt to negotiate new bilateral arrangements with EU countries to provide haulage access. This may require permits when entering the EU Country concerned.

In a no deal scenario, the European Commission have announced that they have adopted a proposal to allow UK operators to temporarily carry goods into the EU. This will last for nine months and is provisional on the UK conferring equivalent rights to EU road haulage operators.

The UK government has also confirmed that UK drivers will be able to continue driving in the EU after we have left, but they may be required to carry an International Driving Permit. It is important to note that automatic recognition of professional drivers who have UK issued CPCs will cease if the UK leaves without an agreement. It would then be up to individual EU countries as to whether they choose to continue recognising UK issued CPCs. The UK Government has said it will continue to recognise EU issued CPCs and has said that it will not immediately change any of the standards drivers have to meet. 

Click here for more information from the UK Government on Commercial Road Haulage in the EU if there’s no Brexit deal.

What do we know so far?

It is not yet clear as to whether there will be any charges for credit card transactions between the UK and the EU. This is still subject to negotiation between the UK and the EU. If both sides are able to reach an agreement then there will be no charges introduced until the end of the implementation period (December 2020) at the earliest.

The draft Political Declaration (released November 2018) indicated the UK and EU’s intention to agree ‘Provisions to enable free movement of capital and payments related to transactions liberalised under the economic partnership, subject to relevant exceptions’.

In the event of a “No Deal” Brexit

The Government has confirmed in the series of no deal technical papers released that UK based payment service providers would lose direct access to the EU central payments infrastructure. The Government say that this is likely to lead to an increase in the cost of card payments between the EU and the UK. In a no deal scenario, the recently introduced surcharging ban will no longer apply which means that businesses may be able to charge consumers for using a specific payment method should they wish to do so.

Click here for further information from the UK Government on banking and financial services if there is a no deal Brexit.

What do we know so far?

Since the EU referendum in 2016, political uncertainty has had an impact on the strength of the pound which has continued to fluctuate in value. The fall in the value of the pound tends to benefit British exporters whose goods and services become cheaper and more competitive on the international market.  Whereas UK businesses who import tend to be adversely affected as the costs of their imports will increase.  While no one can predict with any certainty the extent to which Brexit will affect exchange rates, it is highly likely that key events in the negotiations will continue to have an impact causing fluctuations in the currency, including rises in the value of the pound once we have more clarity on the final agreement. It is important that your business factors in the volatility of sterling when making your Brexit preparations and may wish to consider working with a currency partner to manage this risk.

Click here for more information on how Brexit has affected exchange rates.  

Authorised economic operator (AEO) is a special status given to a company which confirms that a company’s customs controls and procedures are efficient and compliant. AEO status provides an organisation with quicker access to certain simplified customs procedures. It may also result in their shipments being fast-tracked through certain customs and safety and security procedures. Once a business achieves AEO status in one EU member state, that status is recognised by other customs authorities across the EU. There are two types of AEO status that a company can apply for. The first type is AEO status for customs simplification (AEOC) and the second one is AEO status for security and safety (AEOS) purposes, if their supply chain, record keeping, legal compliance and solvency meets certain standards.

In order to qualify for AEOC status, your business must fulfil the criteria of having: good tax and customs compliance history, good commercial and transport record keeping standards, financial solvency, and professional qualifications or demonstrating practical standards of competence in the activity they are involved in. To be eligible for AEO Status you must not only fulfil the above criteria (excluding professional qualifications and practical standards of competence), but also appropriate security and safety standards including: physical integrity and access controls, logistical processes and personnel and identification of business partners.

For more information on AEO status and how to apply for it click here. The GBCC International Business Hub delivers AEO training courses. For more information on forthcoming events click here and select “International Trade Seminars & Training” from the drop down menu.


Who can help?

Brexit Clinics

FREE events giving local businesses an opportunity to speak with guest experts about how key aspects of Brexit might impact their organisation and what they can do to prepare.

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The Brexit Health Check

Your FREE personalised guide to how Brexit may impact your business and recommended steps to take to prepare.

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Gov.uk: Get Ready for Brexit

Government advice & guidance on preparing for Brexit.

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Brexit Business Readiness Events

Government events taking place across the UK offering advice & guidance on preparing for Brexit.

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British Chamber e-guides and Toolkits

 

If you would like: more information on how the GBCC can support businesses through Brexit, to provide a case study on your Brexit preparations, to recommend a speaker for a GBCC Brexit event, to request a GBCC speaker on Brexit or to enquire about sponsoring Brexit related research please leave your contact details below: