Brexit is the six-letter word that strikes fear and uncertainty in the heart of all UK citizens and business owners. We’d love to give you a definitive rundown of how the changes will affect your logistics needs, but because we don’t have a crystal ball, we can’t.
What we can do is run through a few of the steps you can take to prepare for whatever happens.
The impact of Brexit
Back in June 2016, the UK voted to leave the EU by 52% to 48%. It was hardly a landslide, but it meant the majority of the UK was ready to ‘take back control’ of its borders, money and laws.
Now in a transition period, we are all on tenterhooks to find out the impact our ‘divorce’ will have on international trade.
Come January 1st, 2021, we’ll no longer be part of the EU’s single market and customs union. As a result, there will be an onslaught of new customs formalities and regulatory controls to get your head around.
The extent of the fallout is anyone’s guess, but considering the facts and figures below, you can be sure it’s not going to be a pain-free experience.
- The value of the UK’s trade with the EU is approximately £360 million
- 47% of the goods we exported in 2015 went to the EU, while 54% of goods we imported came from the EU
- Over the last ten years, exports of goods to the EU from the UK have risen 9.2%, from £123 billion in 2005 to £134.4 billion in 2015
If you import or export goods, Brexit is going to impact your logistics requirements. Whether it’s outbound products from the UK to the EU, goods entering the UK from the EU, or transit flows from markets outside the EU that come through the UK on the way to their final destination; things are going to change.
Deal or no deal – what you can do to prepare
Will we get a deal? Who knows? Let’s face it, right now even the politicians don’t know. That’s why you must take steps now to prepare yourself.
- Make sure your systems and procedures are in place to cope with the increased volume of customs declarations for imports and exports
- Work closely with your logistics provider to identify the impact Brexit will have on your operations
- Carry out a trade continuity and market access assessment and apply for all necessary licenses and permits
- Review penalty clauses for delivery times in case of delays at the border
- Make sure you stay up to date with EU and regulator announcements on policy changes
- If you an exporter or an importer, you must be registered and have an EORI number
The impact of Brexit on your logistics
The impact will go much further than increased paperwork, a steep learning curve and severe headaches.
First, there will be increased security controls. A new border infrastructure means more checks for your freight.
Secondly, those increased security checks, coupled with the need to show more documents related to customs clearance, is going to result in delays (that’s why we mentioned reviewing your penalty clauses in the earlier section).
Thirdly, and not surprisingly, this is all going to result in more paperwork for you.
Keep up to date to avoid nasty surprises
Even if you’ve been living under a stone for the past year or two, you’ll know the clock is ticking on Brexit. Despite the best efforts of COVID to keep it out of the headlines, Brexit is still there, looming large on the horizon.
It’s down to you to make sure you and your business are ready for the ‘new normal’ that will come into force on January 1st. That’s why it’s critical you stay up to date with what’s happening. Ignorance is not a valid defence.
Smart Directions’ Brexit updates give you the information you need to make forward-thinking strategic decisions that will reduce any disruption your business may face.