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2 min read

How should we prepare for a ‘no deal’ Brexit scenario?

For 2 years the government has been implementing a significant programme of work to ensure the UK will be ready for Brexit from day one in all scenarios, including a potential ‘no deal’ outcome on 29th March 2019.

Whilst the government do not want or expect a ‘no deal’ scenario, it’s duty bound to continue to prepare for a range of possible outcomes including the unlikely event of ‘no deal’. If the UK leaves the EU without any deal in March 2019, there will be changes for every business and individual operating at the UK border.

The government has recently published a Partnership Pack on GOV.UK to help businesses plan for the unlikely possibility of a ‘no deal’ EU Exit. This is an updated version and continues to build on the previous version of the pack which was published last month, and includes additional information about trade at the border from departments across government.

The pack, designed for businesses and their stakeholders is full of useful information to help with contingency planning. It focuses on how VAT, Customs and Excise could be affected and includes information split by topic and audience. It also contains easy to follow flow charts and downloadable posters so that you can simply identify and take relevant information and share it.

In the pack you’ll find key details including:

Customs, excise, VAT and regulatory changes

  • UK businesses will have to apply customs, excise and VAT procedures to goods traded with the EU, in broadly the same way that already applies for goods traded outside of the EU.
  • The government will aim will be to keep VAT procedures as close as possible to what they are now to provide continuity and certainty for businesses.
  • Goods traded between the UK from the EU will be subject to the same requirements as third country goods, including the payment of duty.

What will it mean for the manufacturing industry?

If you’re intending to place products on the UK market on or after 29 March 2019, for a time limited period, products that meet EU requirements can continue to be placed on the UK market without any need for retesting or re-marking.

Placing products on the EU market, tested by a UK-based notified body they will need to be retested by an EU-recognised conformity assessment body before placing on the EU internal market.

Importing from the EU?

The trade that you carry out with the EU will broadly follow the customs controls that apply for the rest of the world – you will need to adapt your business to comply with these new systems, processes and controls.

Customs checks may be carried out and you will need to pay any customs duties required under a new UK Trade Tariff, to replace the EU Common Customs Tariff (CCT).

Exporting to the EU only?

The trade that you carry out with the EU will broadly follow the customs controls that apply for the rest of the world and your business should be adapted accordingly.

A UK business supplying services to the EU?

You will broadly need to follow the same customs controls as businesses trading with the rest of the world – so will need to adapt your business to comply with these systems, processes and controls.

The pack is very comprehensive and has an abundance of information relating to specific industries including the transportation of livestock, chemicals, medicine, the impact on haulage companies…..and so much more. It also has valuable material about personal travel to and from the EU and UK. 

Regular updates and future editions will be made available to include additional information around policies that will impact trade at the border – so keep checking back for new updates. Access the pack here.


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