FTA: ‘no deal’ Brexit checklist

11 / 10 / 2017

  • Hookham: ‘it is urgent that the Government commences detailed discussions with the logistics and supply chain sector immediately’

The UK’s Freight Transport Association (FTA) has issued a checklist of conditions that it believes are essential to keep Britain trading in the event of a ‘no deal’ Brexit outcome.

Following the publication of the UK Government’s White Papers on trading and customs agreements in such a scenario, the FTA’s list is as follows:

“Customs systems big enough to cope with the 255 million additional declarations that will need to be made each year, including fast-track arrangements for approved traders, pre-clearance of goods before a journey begins and post-payment of duties to avoid detention in ports.

“Learning support for the 185,000 UK businesses that currently trade solely with the EU and will need to learn how to do Customs declarations for the first time.

“Equally frictionless arrangements by other EU countries – our exports are their imports so it’s not just a question of getting the goods out of the UK, they will need to clear EU Customs as well.

“Avoid vehicle checks at “roll on, roll off (ro-ro)” ports at all costs – an additional two minutes in clearance times at Dover will create a motorway queue 17 miles long, and delays in the days following the UK’s departure from the EU could be significantly longer than this at peak times.

“No-cliff edge. Exporters and importers will need time to learn what they have to do under the new trading regime, as well as changing their procedures and instructing their staff.”

FTA deputy chief executive James Hookham highlighted various issues that need to be worked out in detail (such as customs tariffs and border checks on freight moving into the UK from the Continent and the Republic of Ireland).

He urged: “None of these issues need be showstoppers but it is urgent that the Government commences detailed discussions with the logistics and supply chain sector immediately.”