With a ‘no-deal’ Brexit looking increasingly likely, the consequences for companies that aren’t prepared will be significant.
There is a little over two weeks until 31 December 2020, at which point the UK will leave the EU crystalising the decision taken back in 2016 when the country voted for “Brexit”.
Since 2016, the UK and EU have been negotiating on various topics; initially on how the UK should leave the bloc and more recently discussions have focussed on the future trading relationship.
At this late stage, there are major unresolved topics and this past weekend’s deadline for a conclusion to talks has been extended.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen late Sunday night released a joint statement saying talks would continue to “go the extra mile’’ to see if an agreement can be reached.
Brexit trade talks between the EU and the UK will continue over the coming days, although Mr Johnson warned Britons to prepare for a no-deal Brexit, with the UK and EU remaining “very far apart” on the key issues. It is thought that the main parts of a possible trade deal are ready, but the two parties are struggling to agree a way to allow for retaliation if, in the future, UK and EU laws diverge in a way that puts continental firms at a competitive disadvantage.
It is clear that this uncertainty is far from ideal for businesses already coping with disruption from COVID-19 but the best advice is – and has been for some time – prepare for a no-deal Brexit.
If a deal is agreed later in December, the cost and inconvenience of reversing any no deal preparations will undoubtedly be better than doing nothing now. For some businesses that have not prepared for Brexit, the shock of a no-deal in January 2021 could be fatal.
If you have any questions regarding Brexit and how it affects your operations, please feel free to contact your usual ZEDRA contact or email email@example.com. You can also find additional news articles on Brexit on our website here.