Yesterday, 9th July, the EU released a update on the current state of readiness in both the UK and EU for the end of the transition period on 31 Dec 2020
Brussels has warned UK companies to prepare for “thorough checks” at EU borders and the loss of certain rights in a stark warning of Brexit’s ramifications. On the same day that Michel Barnier, the EU’s Brexit negotiator, said “significant divergences” remained in Brussels’ future-relationship talks with Britain, the European Commission on Thursday issued a policy paper warning of “far reaching and automatic changes” regardless of the outcome of the negotiations. The paper was published to help companies and citizens prepare for the end of Britain’s transition period on December 31.
Brussels also underlined the urgency, telling businesses to prepare for a full suite of checks and “inevitable disruptions”. “There is no room for complacency or postponing readiness and adaptation measures in anticipation that an agreement would ensure continuity,” the paper says. “If not yet done, public administrations, businesses and citizens in the Union must urgently take all the necessary readiness measures.”
The paper reflects anxiety in Brussels that businesses on both sides of the Channel have yet to process the full ramifications of Brexit more than four years after the referendum, with too much focus being placed on the potential benefits of a future trade deal.
Other specific warnings to businesses include that UK imports could be subject to anti-dumping duties and other punitive measures in the event of a possible EU-UK trade dispute. Brussels nonetheless stressed that it was in both sides’ interest to broker a deal on their future relationship, saying that failure to do so “would lead to disruptions that would be more far reaching than the changes outlined”. You can read the full document at https://ec.europa.eu/info/sites/info/files/brexit_files/info_site/com_2020_324_2_communication_from_commission_to_inst_en_0.pdf
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