On April 18, Britain’s Prime Minster, Theresa May, called a general election for June 8.
Brexit and the Trump Revolution are often linked. What really unites them is the extraordinarily uncommercial attitude many of their politicians are taking to what real businesses want.
The UK House of Commons Select Committee on the Treasury has now published the correspondence revealing why it talks about its “collapse in confidence in the successful implementation of the Customs Declaration System” essential to UK apparel imports continuing after Brexit.
On 29 March, Britain’s Prime Minister signed a letter triggering the two-year process for leaving the European Union (EU). Though the negotiations will cover almost every aspect of British life, one issue affects our industry more than any other. Customs
The Chair of a UK Parliament Treasury Committee said on March 31 that “confidence had collapsed” in Britain’s having essential Customs IT infrastructure ready to handle the expected fivefold increase in Customs declarations in time for its planned Spring 2019 EU exit date.
Northern Ireland would have the right to join the EU automatically as part of the Irish Republic if a all-Ireland poll won majority support for Irish union, the British government has said.
An internal March 2016 document within the UK Customs Administration (known locally as HMRC), leaked by Britain’s Sunday Times on March 26, admits that “Any form of customs controls will increase the costs to businesses and consumers of imported and exported products. These costs can be both financial and measured in time/delays.”
A survey of UK voters’ attitudes towards Brexit published on March 21 shows both far higher approval of free trade with the other 27 EU countries after the UK leaves than is seen for free trade in any other EU country. Perhaps more surprising, the survey shows little difference in attitudes towards trade those voting for Brexit and those voting to Remain.
The UK government will need to enact up to 15 new bills and thousands of pages of secondary legislation in addition to a centrepiece Great Repeal Bill over the next two years, research on Brexit practicalities from an independent think-tank revealed on March 20. The UK typically enacts about 20 significant new laws a year.
The UK is facing a €1.98 bn bill from the EU for “repeatedly ignoring warnings” of tax frauds on imported Chinese shoes and apparel. The case highlights grave systemic complications in Britain’s handling of trade which threaten to complicate further its preparations for leaving the EU.
The British government has not carried out no assessment of its Prime Minister’s threat to leave the EU without reaching a new deal since the Brexit vote, said the government minister responsible for managing Britain’s exit programme on March 15.
UK media began carrying increasingly nervous stories in March about Britain’s ability to handle the flow of imports and exports after the UK leaves the EU in spring 2019.
“China must be ready to face [the] growing trend of protectionism” said its Premier Li Keqiang on March 5.
In a report on UK trade options beyond 2019 published on March 1, the International Trade Committee of MPs concluded on that ‘the “no deal” option should be discounted entirely.
The UK government was reported on March 1 to have instructed its departments to have plans ready for governing if Britain fails to secure an adequate free trade deal with the EU after leaving in spring 2017.